Automaker Ford Motor Company (NYSE: F) and European rival Volkswagen have finalized a $2.6-billion joint investment in Argo AI to explore autonomous vehicle technologies in the U.S. and Europe, Ford Autonomous Vehicles CEO John Lawler said in a Medium post on Tuesday.
Ford and Volkswagen announced nearly a year ago a collaboration with Argo AI to "better serve our future customers" while simultaneously improving the two companies' cost and capital efficiencies, Lawler wrote.
The partnership with Volkswagen is part of Ford's goal of spending more than $4 billion through 2023 on self-driving technologies.
Why It's Important
Part of the rationale behind teaming up with Volkswagen is that it makes Argo AI's self-driving software the first of its kind to deploy in the U.S. and Europe, Lawler wrote.
Argo AI's platform will have the largest geographic deployment potential, and scale and geographic reach are important factors in developing a top-tier self-driving platform, he said.
Now is the time for Ford to be "thoughtful about the service we are building" so the company will remain "relevant in a changing world," the executive said. Ford wants to continue offering customers "peace of mind knowing they, or their packages, are in a safe and protected environment inside our vehicles."
Ford shares were up 0.85% at $5.92 at the time of publication Tuesday. Over-the-counter VW shares were up 1.6% at $16.51.
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Photo courtesy of Ford.
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