Self-Driving Fiat Chrysler Vans to Deliver Your Packages Soon

Aurora partners with Fiat Chrysler over self-driving tech

Fiat Chrysler says it has signed a memorandum of understanding with Aurora, an autonomous vehicle company, to explore a potential partnership to develop self-driving commercial vehicles.

Their self-driving system, which is called the Aurora Driver, consists of hardware, software and data services that collectively enable Level 4 automation, which means vehicles are capable of navigating themselves without human intervention or oversight.

Sterling Anderson, Aurora's co-founder and chief product officer, added in a statement that they are thrilled to partner with FCA and "develop a meaningful business model for delivering the benefits of self-driving commercial vehicles". Neither company offered a time frame for when such vehicles would be on the road.

"As part of FCA's autonomous vehicle strategy, we will continue to work with strategic partners in this space to address the needs of consumers in a rapidly changing industry", FCA CEO Mike Manley Palo said.

The agreement, whose financial terms were not disclosed, underscores the heavy emphasis automakers are placing on self-driving cars for their future.

The partnership would not affect FCA's deal to provide hybrid Chrysler minivans to Waymo, the autonomous vehicle spinoff from Google.

Last week Fiat Chrysler's parent company ended talks with Groupe Renault for a proposed "merger-of-equals". The merger plans were also complicated by Renault's two-decade alliance with Nissan, which is also a Renault shareholder. Ford and Volkswagen are negotiating a plan to have the German company pool its autonomous efforts with Argo. Enthusiasm cooled after an Uber test vehicle struck and killed a pedestrian past year.

For the record, Aurora had secured $350 million by investors, including Amazon in February this year.

Aurora, headquartered in Palo Alto, California, San Francisco, Pittsburgh, has its own partnerships with leading automobile companies such as Volkswagen, Hyundai and the Chinese electric vehicle company named Byton.

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