The Autonomist

FCA teams up with Aurora on commercial vehicles

Fiat Chrysler Automobiles has signed a deal with autonomous car technology technologists Aurora to develop self-driving commercial vehicles.

Under the arrangement, Aurora – founded by stellar autonomous tech pioneers Chris Urmson of Google, Sterling Anderson of Tesla and Drew Bagnell of Uber – will develop its Aurora Driver platform for delivery trucks.

The deal comes just days after FCA pulled out of merger talks with Renault, indicating the deal may have been on ice during the exploratory talks with the French auto maker.

Over the last two years Aurora has refined its Driver platform, standardising its interfaces, and tailoring the software to vehicles of different makes, models, and classes. To date, the Aurora Driver has been integrated into six vehicle platforms — from sedans, SUVs, and minivans, to a large commercial vehicle and a class 8 truck.

‘This partnership will further expand the scope of the Aurora Driver, allowing us to offer a variety of solutions to strategic customers in logistics, transit, and other use cases’, said Aurora in a statement.

‘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,’ said Mike Manley, chief executive officer, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles in a press statement.

‘Aurora brings a unique skillset combined with advanced and purposeful technology that complements and enhances our philosophy on self-driving.’

By Ray Molony, Technology Editor

Tuesday 11 June 2019