Volkswagen, the German automotive manufacturer recently announced having ended its partnership with self-driving car software company, Aurora. The announcement came on the heels of previous announcement by Aurora to develop autonomous platforms for commercial vehicles in collaboration with Fiat Chrysler Automobiles, report sources.
Volkswagen’s spokesperson reportedly said that the company has concluded its activities in partnership with Aurora. Volkswagen is planning to work on autonomous driving, in collaboration with Ford, as Ford’s subsidiary Argo AI is building an automated driver, that could compete with Aurora’s technology.
Aurora reportedly said in a statement that Volkswagen has been a befitting partner to the company, since the beginning of development of the Aurora Driver and the company is looking forward to work with a growing array of partners.
Autonomous vehicle industry is still in its initial stage of establishment through strategies and alliances. Aurora has a fixed goal to remain independent and serve those autonomous vehicle manufacturers, instead of being acquired.
As per sources close to the matter, Aurora in partnership with Hyundai Motor Company and China’s Byton is to develop & test self-driving systems for automakers and fleet owners. Aurora has recently raised more than $530 million in a fresh funding round, led by venture capital Sequoia.
After partnering with Aurora, Volkswagen began discussions in June 2018 with Ford to develop a range of commercial vehicles and prolonged the discussion to include Argo’s autonomous driving technology and electric vehicles as a part of alliance, to save billions in costs. Volkswagen and Ford have yet not announced collaboration involving electric or autonomous vehicle technology.
As per credible sources, Ford is a better fit for Volkswagen’s alignment of requirements. Talks between the companies are ongoing. There is already one deal between Volkswagen and Ford that has been finalized. In January 2019, the companies have come into an agreement to build commercial vans & medium-sized trucks by 2022.