U.S.-based ride-sharing service Lyft has announced a long-term strategic alliance with General Motors that will bring a fleet of autonomous on-demand cars to the U.S. – but not Canada.
The news is rubbing salt in the wounds for many Canadians still waiting for Uber to enter their market. Now, GM will invest $500 million to help the company grow and innovate “the future of mobility”, including a network of self-driven on-demand vehicles.
“We see the future of personal mobility as connected, seamless and autonomous,” said GM President Dan Ammann. “With GM and Lyft working together, we believe we can successfully implement this vision more rapidly.”
“Working with GM, Lyft will continue to unlock new transportation experiences that bring positive change to our daily lives,” said Lyft President John Zimmer. “Together we will build a better future by redefining traditional car ownership.”
The young company, founded in 2012, will now build a rental hub to provide short-term use vehicles for Lyft drivers in various U.S. cities, provide access to GM’s OnStar services and wide range of cars, and offer joint mobility services and experiences to both Lyft and GM customers
GM is currently developing autonomous car technology, and according to Wired, will have a fleet of self-driving Chevrolet Volts on their corporate campus in Detroit in 2016.
Lyft says they are the fastest growing ridesharing company in the U.S. and are available in over 190 cities, but so far they have not moved out of the U.S.
A spokesperson for the company told Vancity Buzz they do not have any Canadian expansion plans to share at this time.