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Daimler to supply self-driving cars for Uber

Wednesday, February 1, 2017 - 07:12

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German auto giant Daimler on Tuesday said it had struck a partnership with Uber to supply self-driving cars for the US ride-hailing company.

[FRANKFURT] German auto giant Daimler on Tuesday said it had struck a partnership with Uber to supply self-driving cars for the US ride-hailing company.

The tie-up comes as both carmakers and ridesharing firms are jockeying to establish themselves as leading players in the burgeoning world of autonomous driving, seen as the future of the auto industry.

"Under the terms of the cooperation, Daimler plans to introduce self-driving vehicles... on Uber's global ridesharing network in the coming years," the companies said in a joint statement.

The agreement will see Daimler build and operate self-driving Mercedes-Benz cars for use by Uber, but the statement revealed no financial details.

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"As the inventor of the automobile, Daimler aims to be a leader in autonomous driving - one of the most fascinating aspects of reinventing mobility," Daimler CEO Dieter Zetsche said in the statement.

San Francisco-based Uber has invested heavily in self-driving car technology in recent years, and is currently piloting the use of autonomous vehicles on roads in the United States.

But it has no car-building experience, prompting it to seek partnerships.

"Self-driving technology holds the promise of creating cities that are safer, cleaner and more accessible," Uber CEO and co-founder Travis Kalanick said.

"But we can't get to that future alone. That's why we're opening up the Uber platform to auto manufacturers like Daimler."

Uber is already working with Sweden-based Volvo Cars to develop self-driving cars for sale by 2021.

In a world first, a self-driving truck built by Uber's Otto unit successfully delivered a beer shipment in October.

AFP

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