The automaker announced on Monday that it is investing $500 million in Uber and working more closely with the company to accelerate the development and deployment of self-driving vehicles. Uber plans to retrofit Toyota Sienna minivans with its autonomous technology and begin real-world testing in 2021.
The deal gives Toyota a key partner in a field that is growing rapidly, and comes on the same day that four of the automaker’s suppliers announced a partnership to develop some of the software underpinning autonomous vehicles.
“This agreement and investment marks an important milestone in our transformation to a mobility company,” Shigeki Tomoyama, the president of Toyota Connected Company, said in a statement.
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