Robotaxis are coming ya’ll, whether we want them or not. Though, they aren’t close to being ready for primetime, as even more companies are getting into them, from startups to legacy automakers. GM is the latest automaker going in for a bigger push of its robotaxis, as Motor Trend reports plans to bring them to more cities.
During GM’s third-quarter earnings call with investors, CEO Mary Barra highlighted the Detroit-based automaker’s plans for expanding its autonomous vehicle subsidiary, Cruise. Currently based in the San Fransisco area, Cruise says it’s already done 400,000 miles of testing, and just started offering driverless public taxi services. All of these miles coming with mixed results, as one would expect.
Barra said Cruise is planning to expand its driverless robotaxi service to Austin and Phoenix by the end of the year. Cruise CEO Kyle Vogt added, “Supervised testing has begun in Austin with more than a dozen vehicles where AI is factoring in unique elements like donkeys, pedicabs, and police on horses.”
Barra also shared in this call with investors that GM’s Ultium battery plant in Ohio should be up and running soon. With the plant in working order, GMC Hummer EVs and the Cadillac Lyriq will be able to use batteries sourced and made here in the U.S. instead of the imported batteries they use now. She also shared with investors that Buick’s first EV will debut for the Chinese market this year. The U.S. will see an EV in 2024.
And more good news for the money people — despite parts and chip shortages affecting all aspects of the auto business, profits for the General are up by 37 percent to $3.3 billion, while international revenue increased to $41.9 billion
Seems like GM is on the right track across all parts of its business. Let’s hope that they can keep it up.