Business / Corporate

Toyota might turn driverless vehicles into mobile convenience stores and cafes

Kyodo

Toyota Motor Corp. is considering a plan to turn self-driving vehicles into unmanned mobile convenience stores in cooperation with Seven-Eleven Japan Co., sources close to the matter said Friday.

Under the plan, the autonomous electric vehicles would carry Seven-Eleven products to bring self-service convenience to underpopulated areas where it is less profitable to run convenience store outlets, the sources said.

Toyota could also team up with Yamato Holdings Co. on door-to-door delivery using driverless vehicles.

The leading automaker is also looking to offer similar services, such as mobile cafes, to sell Starbucks coffee, the sources added.

In January, the automaker unveiled the e-Palette Concept Vehicle, announcing it will use the driverless platform to build an alliance with such U.S. partners as Amazon.com Inc. and Uber Technologies Inc.

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