Honda Joins GM and Cruise to Speed Development of Autonomous Vehicle Technology

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Detroit-based General Motors Co. and Cruise today announced they have joined forces with Honda to pursue the shared goal of transforming mobility through the large-scale deployment of autonomous vehicle technology.

Under the plan, Honda will work jointly with Cruise and General Motors to fund and develop a purpose-built autonomous vehicle for Cruise that can serve a wide variety of use cases and be manufactured at high volume for global deployment.

In addition, Cruise, General Motors, and Honda will explore global opportunities for commercial deployment of the Cruise network. Honda will contribute approximately $2 billion over 12 years to the initiatives, which, together with a $750 million equity investment in Cruise, brings its total commitment to the project to $2.75 billion.

In addition to the recently announced SoftBank investment, the transaction brings the post-money valuation of Cruise to $14.6 billion. In May, SoftBank announced a $2-billion investment in Cruise.

SoftBank’s Vision Fund will eventually acquire about a 20 percent equity position in Cruise, which GM acquired in 2016, for $2.25 billion over two payments. GM is also putting about another $1 billion into the division.

“This is the logical next step in General Motors and Honda’s relationship, given our joint work on electric vehicles, and our close integration with Cruise,” says Mary Barra, chairman and CEO of General Motors. “Together, we can provide Cruise with the world’s best design, engineering and manufacturing expertise, and global reach to establish them as the leader in autonomous vehicle technology — while they move to deploy self-driving vehicles at scale.”

Seiji Kuraishi, executive vice president and representative director COO of Honda, says the automaker “chose to collaborate with Cruise and General Motors based on their leadership in autonomous and electric vehicle technology and our shared vision of a zero-emissions and zero-collision world.

“We will complement their strengths through our expertise in space efficiency and design to develop the most desirable and effective shared autonomous vehicle.”

San Francisco-based Cruise says the deal will help it “accomplish our mission to safely deploy autonomous technology across the globe,” says Kyle Vogt, CEO of Cruise. “The Honda partnership paves the way for massive scale by bringing a beautiful, efficient, and purpose-built vehicle to our network of shared autonomous vehicles.”

More details on the partnership can be found here.

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