Volvo and Uber join forces in developing autonomous cars

Volvo and Uber have announced plans to join forces in the area of autonomous driving technology.Volvo will supply Uber with cars fitted with autonomous driving systems for development and testing.

Previously, Uber had sourced vehicles from Ford Motor Company. Volvo has confirmed it is developing its own autonomous driving technology.

Volvo and Uber will continue to separately develop autonomous driving technology, though engineers from both firms will work in close collaboration. In fact, Volvo and Uber claim the new deal, valued at approximately $300 million, is just the beginning of a longer term industrial partnership.

“Over one million people die in car accidents every year,” Uber CEO Travis Kalanick said in a statement. “These are tragedies that self-driving technology can help solve but we can’t do this alone.”

Uber is conducting most of its testing in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. According to Bloomberg, Uber is so advanced in the field that it will start allowing customers to hail one of its self-driving test cars for a ride as early as this month. The rides will be limited to the downtown Pittsburgh area and for now one of Uber’s engineers will be behind the wheel to supervise.

Like most companies developing autonomous driving technology, Uber is relying on a combination of cameras, sensors and highly-detailed maps to enable its self-driving cars to navigate the world.

Volvo and Uber develop autonomous cars