Google’s self-driving car company Waymo has partnered with Jaguar-Land Rover to put 20,000 fully autonomous Jaguar I-Pace EVs on US roads over the next few years.
The self-driving Jaguar I-Pace prototypes will join Waymo’s self-driving Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid minivans in its rapidly expanding fleet of autonomous prototypes. Like the Pacifica Hybrids, the I-Pace vehicles will be used to ferry around customers who use Waymo’s app-based ride-hailing service, but will serve as a high-end premium option over the minivans. Sort of like Uber vs. Uber Black – except the vehicles are fully autonomous.
“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,” said Waymo boss John Krafcik. “We’re sure Waymo riders will enjoy the safe, premium and delightful experience that the self-driving I-PACE will provide.”
Jaguar CEO Prof. Dr. Ralf Speth expanded on Krafcik’s comments.
“Our passion for further advancing smart mobility needs expert long-term partners,” he said. “In joining forces with Waymo we are pioneering to push the boundaries of technology. Together we will deliver the self-driving Waymo Jaguar I-PACE with the grace, space and eco-pace that customers expect.”
The Waymo-Jaguar partnership will last through to 2026, so we’ll be seeing self-driving I-Pace SUVs on public roads for years to come, as long as all goes to plan. The Jaguar I-Pace will enter production later this year before going on sale in Q3 or Q4. It’s not clear when the first Waymo-operated I-Pace vehicles may come about, but we wouldn’t be shocked to see the company start to take deliveries before the end of the year.
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