Robotaxi via Lyft app launched in Las Vegas – IoT World Today


Motional has confirmed that its Hyundai Ioniq 5 robotaxi is now available for rides in Las Vegas.

Customers can order the free, standalone Ioniq 5 through the Lyft app, though two security guards are in the car at the moment.

The start of operations is a prelude to the fully driverless service launching next year that Boston-based Motional showed off in May.

This is the first time passengers anywhere will have the opportunity to experience the company’s Ioniq 5 cabin, which is equipped with a combination of more than 30 lidar sensors, radar sensors and cameras.

It is also the first time that an all-electric autonomous vehicle (AV) has been deployed on the Lyft network.

Unlike other AVs we’ve seen used on US roads, the Ioniq 5 hasn’t been retrofitted with its driverless technology.

Instead, Motional’s kit was fully integrated and the Ioniq 5 was designed and built from the ground up as a driverless vehicle. The sensor suite is clearly visible on the outside, distinguishing it from conventional Ioniq 5s driven by human drivers.

Ordering one will be a familiar affair for regular Lyft app users. They will still be able to see when the vehicle is due to arrive and track the location of the car during the trip.

But since the Motional Ioniq 5 was created to connect directly to the Lyft network, a number of additional features are available.

These include unlocking the doors when the vehicle comes to a stop by sliding a button on the app, and also indicating when the journey can begin by pressing a button in the car.

And if there are any concerns during the trip, press another button to contact Lyft customer service.

The vehicle is also equipped with application touchscreens mounted behind each front row seat that provide real-time information including destination, location and estimated time of arrival.

Motional and Lyft have been testing in Las Vegas since 2018, providing a model for AVs on ridesharing networks that has helped more than 100,000 Lyft drivers learn about driverless technology.

Once Las Vegas’ fully driverless, paid service launches next year, the plan is to follow suit in other U.S. cities.

“Motional and Lyft have a clear path to widespread commercialization of Level 4 autonomous vehicles,” said Karl Iagnemma, President and CEO of Motional.

And Logan Green, CEO and co-founder of Lyft, said, “The launch gives cyclists access to Motional’s autonomous technology in a way that will feel seamless, familiar and personalized, all on a network they’re doing. already confident. We design a self-driving experience where riders’ only expectation is to relax and enjoy the ride.

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