Ride-hail company Grab is open to exploring self-driving car partnerships when the technology is ready
Uber has been testing self-driving Ford Fusions on Pittsburgh streets for the last year, and the company yesterday officially confirmed that it has been doing so. Meanwhile, Singaporean ride-hailing startup Grab says it isn’t developing its own self-driving cars, but is open to joining a global partnership for the tech. Kind of like its partnership with Lyft and Didi.
Grab CEO Anthony Tan says that although autonomous technology is still in its nascent stages, the company is open to working with the clear local winner in Singapore when the robot cars are ready.
At minimum, Grab would likely contribute the match-making technology it uses to pair riders with the closest drivers in an autonomous self-driving network, Tan told Recode. He declined to go into more detail, given there are not yet official plans on the books.
Grab, which is part of a four-member global ride-hail alliance, isn’t the only player among them that is eyeing autonomous technology. Lyft is of course in the most advanced stages and is working with General Motors on a driverless ride-hail service. But after announcing Apple’s $1 billion investment in the company, Didi president Jean Liu said the China ride-hail behemoth also has plans to explore autonomous technology.
- Grab taxi might join the apps interested in developing autonomous vehicles.