Lyft looks to pull ahead in the self-driving tech world with its new venture.
As Uber seems to keep skidding off left and right, its ride-hailing rival, Lyft, is making moves to define itself as the premier choice for customers. But it's doing more than just picking people up and dropping them off. Lyft, the not-so-steeped-in-controversy company, has been quietly developing its self-driving car tech and now news from the San Francisco Chronicle shows a new partnership with Magna, the largest auto-supply maker in North America.
Molting Hot Magna
The point behind the developing partnership is to fund, develop, and produce self-driving cars. A $200 million investment from Canada-based Magna, the new venture is poised to set up Lyft to "commercialize self-driving cars and roll out at scale," notes Lyft CEO and co-founder Logan Green.
The partnership will also bring Magna into the spotlight among the auto industry. It's been laying the cut in the background for years without any real notice, but it's been the premier company churning out auto parts, from exteriors to electric drive trains. It currently handles the production of about 200,000 vehicles a year with its other grouping with companies like Jaguar, BMW, and Daimler. So, chances are, if you've ever driven a car, your hands or butt or feet have touched its products.
Lyft is set to lead the co-development of autonomous prototypes in Palo Alto. No date has been set as far as manufacturing goes, but the goal is to create Lyft-Magna robot cars available to the masses, not just Lyft customers.
Lyft has been making connections with multiple companies in the arena of self-driving tech. It's partnered with Jaguar Land Rover, General Motors, Concord's GoMentum Station, and Waymo, which won a bitter battle against intellectual property theft against Uber this winter.