As the plot thickens and the race to bring driverless automobiles to showrooms heats up, the argument over who will buy cars in the technology era is getting louder. Many believe that the future will see a drastic shift from people owning cars to being just mere passengers.
Hyundai Motors, a latecomer to electrification and autonomous driving, is betting against individuals owning robot cars and preparing for a future in which the biggest buyers will be ride-sharing giants such as Uber Technologies Inc., Lyft Inc. and GrabTaxi Holdings Pte. The South Korean automaker said last month it invested in Singapore-based Grab, Southeast Asia’s biggest cab-hailing service.
In the past, people liked to own their cars. In the near future, I think the owner of the self-driving market will be mobility-service providers.
– Woongjun Jang, Director_ Hyundai ADAS
Hyundai, along-side working on vehicles and software systems for a planned robo-taxi service with Aurora, the company is also investing in startups and talking to Waymo, Uber and Grab. Hyundai is seeking to provide a flexible, open platform in its cars, so buyers could customize applications to suit their needs, unlike some rivals that are developing vehicles for, say, delivery of pizzas or groceries.