In the not so distant future, the next time you call for an Uber, you just might get a Mercedes-Benz E-Class with autonomous driving capabilities.
Uber opened up an new platform that gives automakers the opportunity to showcase their lastest self-driving vehicles and Daimler is the very first to auto manufacturer to join.
Under the program, both companies will 'cooperate on the supply and operation of self-driving vehicles' and on Daimler's part, to introduce their autonomous vehicles into Uber's ridesharing network in the years to come.
It is a strategic move for Daimler that is in line with their new corporate strategy called CASE (Connected, Autonomous, Shared & Services and Electric) and a chance to advance their expertise in the field of autonomous driving technology.
Daimler's new Mercedes-Benz E-Class is the world’s first series-production vehicle to be awarded a test license for autonomous driving in the US state of Nevada while Daimler Trucks, now equipped with the Highway Pilot system, is the world’s first truck manufacturer with plans to develop an autonomous driving system for use in commercial vehicles.
“As the inventor of the automobile, Daimler aims to be a leader in autonomous driving – one of the most fascinating aspects of reinventing mobility. Mobility service providers offer an ideal platform for autonomous driving technology and Uber is a leading mobility platform company. The real revolution in future mobility lies in intelligently linking the four major trends we call CASE: connectivity, autonomous driving, sharing and electric mobility. And we will certainly be the driver of these changes”, said Dieter Zetsche, Chairman of the Board of Management of Daimler AG and Head of Mercedes-Benz Cars.
“Self-driving technology holds the promise of creating cities that are safer, cleaner and more accessible. But we can’t get to that future alone. That’s why we’re opening up the Uber platform to auto manufacturers like Daimler. By combining Daimler’s and Uber’s technological strengths, more people can get access to reliable transportation at the push of a button,” said Travis Kalanick, CEO and Co-Founder of Uber.