Ford plans to have a autonomous car fleet in 2021
Ford is going to build a fully autonomous car without a steering wheel or gas and brake pedals. The vehicle is expected to be in commercial operation in 2021. The company will collaborate with four startups in the development of its autonomous vehicle technology. Ford will also double its Silicon Valley team and more than double its Palo Alto campus.
Ford’s first fully autonomous vehicle will be a Society of Automotive Engineers-rated level 4-capable vehicle. It is being specifically designed for commercial mobility services, such as ride sharing and ride hailing, and will be available in high volumes.
Autonomous test fleet
This year, Ford will triple its autonomous vehicle test fleet, bringing the number to about thirty self-driving Fusion Hybrid sedans on the roads in California, Arizona and Michigan. The car producer is planning to triple that amount again next year.
To deliver an autonomous vehicle in 2021, Ford is announcing four key investments and collaborations that are expanding its strong research in advanced algorithms, 3D mapping, LiDAR, and radar and camera sensors. Ford also is expanding its Silicon Valley operations, creating a dedicated campus in Palo Alto.
“The next decade will be defined by automation of the automobile, and we see autonomous vehicles as having as significant an impact on society as Ford’s moving assembly line did 100 years ago,” said Mark Fields, Ford president and CEO. “We’re dedicated to putting on the road an autonomous vehicle that can improve safety and solve social and environmental challenges for millions of people, not just those who can afford luxury vehicles.”