- Jaguar and Waymo will develop of fleet of self-driving, luxury all-electric vehicles.
- The new Jaguar I-PACE will be outfitted with Waymo’s self-driving technology.
- 20,000 vehicles will be rolled out in the first two years.
NEW YORK – On Tuesday, Waymo and Jaguar announced plans to jointly develop a large fleet of all-electric, self-driving luxury vehicles.
The announcement occurred a day before two media preview days at the New York auto show.
The companies said that testing, using the recently launched I-PACE, would commence later this year.
“Up to 20,000 I-PACEs will be built in the first two years of production and be available for riders of Waymo’s driverless service, serving a potential one million trips per day,” the automaker and the autonomous-mobility division of Alphabet said in a statement.
“While we’ve been focused at Waymo on building the world’s most experienced driver, the team at Jaguar Land Rover has developed an all-new battery-electric platform that looks to set a new standard in safety, design and capability,” Waymo CEO John Krafcik, who was on hand in New York to reveal the initiative, added.
Jaguar has brought the I-PACE to the Big Apple and has been providing additional information about the car, which is intended to compete with the likes of Tesla and Porsche, since last year. The I-PACE will be able to travel 240 miles on a single charge and accelerate from 0-60 mph in under five seconds.
No human drivers
Waymo used to be known as the Google Car project, which was started in 2009; the division was spun off in 2016.
It has been testing fully autonomous vehicles, requiring no human driver, in Arizona since 2017. The company has outfitted a fleet of Chrysler Pacifica minivans with laser-radars and other self-driving sensors.
General Motor’s Cruise division has been testing its own fleet of self-driving electric vehicles, while Tesla has been rolling out its Autopilot semi-self-driving technology with real-world owners. Uber has been testing its self-driving tech using Volvo SUVS, one of which was involved in a fatal accident in Tempe, Arizona on March 18.
The partnership between Jaguar – owned by India’s Tata Group, along with Land Rover – and Waymo is among the first instances of luxury brands combining with a tech company to push forward autonomous systems. The I-PACE will be incorporated into Waymo’s on-demand ride-hailing service, scheduled to launch later in 2018 in Phoenix.
“Our passion for further advancing smart mobility needs expert long-term partners,” Prof. Dr. Ralf Speth, Jaguar Land Rover CEO, said in a statement. “In joining forces with Waymo we are pioneering to push the boundaries of technology.”