Toyota is getting a Lyft — or part of one, anyway. The Japanese carmaker said Tuesday it had agreed with the U.S. ride-hailing firm to acquire its self-driving arm for $550 million, as the world’s No. 1 automaker doubles down on autonomous driving tech.
A day earlier, Toyota said it will increase its intake of software engineers to up to 50% of all technical hires from next spring, while the revival last month of Toyota’s alliance with Isuzu is all about developing next-gen autonomous trucks.
Earlier this month, Toyota also unveiled new models of its Lexus sedan and hydrogen-powered Mirai equipped with assistant technologies that allow drivers to take their hands off the wheel in designated lanes.
Toyota may have pioneered the world’s most successful hybrid, but when it comes to the pure electric vehicles it has some catching up to do, especially in relation to GM in China, Reuters reports.
The Japanese firm took the first step in that direction in Shanghai this month, unveiling an EV strategy that will see 15 new battery-electric vehicles released by 2025.
While CEO Akio Toyoda has waxed cautiously about banking on pure EVs in the past, Honda has no such qualms. On Friday, the company said it will stop selling new gas-powered vehicles, including hybrids, worldwide by 2040.