Valeo and DiDi Autonomous Driving have unveiled a strategic cooperation and investment pact on May 29th, with a joint objective to develop cutting-edge safety solutions for Level 4 (L4) autonomous taxis, also known as robotaxis. The partnership signifies Valeo’s intent to invest in DiDi Autonomous Driving, thereby taking the strategic association a step ahead and promoting the long-term expansion of a significant player in the autonomous driving future.
Why It Matters
This partnership will merge the expertise of both companies to offer passengers a safe, reliable, comfortable, and cost-effective autonomous driving experience. Moreover, they plan to establish a collaborative research and development team focusing on the safety mechanisms for L4 robotaxis.
Specifically, Valeo and DiDi Autonomous Driving aim to supplement the L4 standard technology, responsible for the autonomous and secure navigation of the robotaxi, with another set of hardware and software – an Automated Safety Pilot. This additional system will function as a redundancy to the primary system, providing a fallback in case of unexpected failures. Furthermore, it will feature tailored safety functionalities suited to particular operational circumstances, ensuring the protection of passengers and other road users.
Initially, this intelligent safety solution will be deployed in DiDi Autonomous Driving’s L4 Robotaxis. Valeo Executive Vice President Strategy and CTO, Geoffrey Bouquot, emphasizes the partnership’s significance, stating, “Valeo has been developing leading technologies to reach and support L4 autonomous driving for many years. This strategic partnership will contribute to Valeo’s commitment to offer solutions for smart, safe and affordable mobility.”
According to Meng Xing, COO of DiDi Autonomous Driving, safety is the company’s top priority as they advance toward mass production and commercialization. The collaboration with Valeo will pave the way for crucial breakthroughs in standardizing and scaling key modules of autonomous driving systems. This will significantly enhance the overall system safety of L4 Robotaxis and offer passengers high-quality driverless mobility services. The end goal of this strategic partnership is to expedite the commercialization of autonomous driving technology.