Lyft Plans to Test Self-Driving Cars in Boston, Thanks to a Local Startup

You may have seen one of nuTonomy's self-driving cars in Boston's Seaport. Now you may soon have a chance to ride in one, thanks to a new partnership the Cambridge-based autonomous vehicle startup has landed with Lyft.

The two companies announced a strategic research and development partnership on Tuesday. The Boston Herald reported that the Lyft will eventually start providing rides, limited to the Seaport, though not without explicit approval from regulators. Both companies have been working with city officials on the project.

While Lyft's self-driving car service will start with a few cars, Logan Green, Lyft's CEO, told the Herald that the company is working on plans "that could lead to thousands of nuTonomy cars on the Lyft platform."

The goal of the partnership is to understand how passengers interact with self-driving cars, from the routing and booking of the vehicle to the performance of the driving system and the comfort level of the passenger.

NuTonomy, which is one of BostInno's 17 tech companies to watch in 2017, has been testing its own fleet of self-driving taxis in Singapore since 2016, a test that expanded through a partnership with Southeast Asian ride-hailing company Grab. The startup has raised $19.6 million from investors, including Highland Capital, Samsung Ventures and Fontinalis Partners.

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