Volvo Cars announced that the company has signed a framework agreement with Uber, the ride sharing company, to sell tens of thousands of autonomous driving compatible base vehicles between 2019 and 2021.
The base vehicles will be the XC90 – built on fully modular, in-house developed Scalable Product Architecture (SPA) which is claimed to be one of the most advanced car architectures in the world and is currently used on Volvo’s top-of-the-line 90 series cars and on the new XC60 midsize SUV.
“The automotive industry is being disrupted by technology and Volvo Cars chooses to be an active part of that disruption,” said Håkan Samuelsson, President and Chief Executive. “Our aim is to be the supplier of choice for AD ride-sharing service providers globally. Today’s agreement with Uber is a primary example of that strategic direction.”
Volvo Cars’ engineers have worked closely together with engineers from Uber to develop the XC90 SUVs that are to be supplied to Uber. The base vehicles incorporate all necessary safety, redundancy and core autonomous driving technologies that are required for Uber to add its own self-driving technology, said the company.
At the same time as providing Uber with AD compatible cars, Volvo will use the same base vehicle in the development of its own independent autonomous car strategy, which is planned to culminate in the release of its first fully autonomous car in 2021.
“This new agreement puts us on a path towards mass produced self-driving vehicles at scale”, said Jeff Miller, Head of Auto Alliances, Uber.