© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: A brand of Pony.ai is seen on a Lexus car geared up with the corporate’s autonomous driving system, which is able to function a robotaxi, in Beijing, China Could 13, 2021. REUTERS/Tingshu Wang
BEIJING/SHANGHAI (Reuters) -Baidu and Pony.Ai stated on Thursday they’d acquired permits to deploy robotaxis with out people within the driving seat on open Chinese language roads for the primary time, in one other occasion of Beijing metropolis’s help for the autonomous-driving sector.
The permits are the newest set of approvals the municipal authorities has handed out over the previous yr to the 2 firms, which have been allowed to check drive their autonomous autos in some areas of town.
The brand new permits enable each firms to supply rides to most of the people from automobiles with out anybody sitting behind the steering wheels on open roads inside a 60 sq. kilometre (23 sq. mile) space within the Beijing Financial and Technological Improvement Zone.
Baidu (NASDAQ:) stated 10 of its autonomous autos would supply such rides.
Pony.ai didn’t say what number of automobiles it will deploy below the brand new allow. For now it will nonetheless have security supervisors within the entrance passenger seats, it stated.
In November the 2 firms had been allowed to launch fee-charging robotaxi providers in a smaller space in the identical zone, however authorities required them to retain a security driver behind the wheel.
Toyota Motor-backed Pony.ai additionally obtained a taxi license in Guangzhou on Sunday, permitting 100 of its autonomous autos to start out charging fares for rides within the southern metropolis’s Nansha district. These autos will retain security drivers.