Aurora and Fiat Chrysler launch self-driving commercial vehicle partnership
Aurora, the self-driving startup that already has relationships with a number of automakers, has just announced its newest collaboration, working with Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) on self-driving commercial vehicle platforms.
Aurora's partnership with FCA will "further expand the scope" of its Aurora Driver system "to offer a variety of solutions to strategic customers in logistics, transit, and other use cases," the company said in a blog post.
This is far from the first partnership for Aurora, as the startup announced collaborations with both Volkswagen and Hyundai in January 2018. Aurora also has a partnership with electric car startup BYTON.
In February, Aurora secured a $530 million investment from the likes of Amazon and Sequoia. The startup now claims it has integrated Aurora Driver into six different vehicle platforms, "from sedans, SUVs, and minivans, to a large commercial vehicle and a class 8 truck."
As for FCA, the carmaker has already sold tens of thousands of its Chrysler Pacificas to Waymo for self-driving tests. On this new deal, FCA CEO Mike Manley said,
"As part of FCA's autonomous vehicle strategy we will continue to work with strategic partners in this space to address the needs of consumers in a rapidly changing industry. Aurora brings a unique skillset combined with advanced and purposeful technology that complements and enhances our philosophy on self-driving."
Focusing on commercial vehicles with Aurora would add another dimension to the company's overarching autonomous strategy.
It's been a busy month or so for FCA, which pitched a 50-50 merger offer to France's Renault, only to withdraw it last week. The company also gave Tesla $2 billion for emission credits in Europe.
Renault's existing partnership with Nissan seemed to play a large role in the withdrawal of FCA's merger. The deal is not completely dead yet, but Nissan will have its say on whether it can be resuscitated, according to a new Reuters report.