Zoox unveils ‘Robotaxi’ – Amazon’s possibly first self-driving car
A self-driving start-up, Zoox Inc. owned by Amazon.com Inc., unveiled a prototype of its Robotaxi i.e. all-electric four-wheeler with no steering wheel but sensors. The cube-shaped vehicle seats up to four people and has the capability to drive day and night on a single charge and maxes out at 75 miles per hour.
At just 3.63 meters long, the carriage-style vehicle has a motor at each end and can travel in either direction or bi-directionally. As per the company, the two battery packs generate enough juice for 16 hours of run time before recharging. It also has an unusually large battery of 133kWh roughly twice the size of many electric vehicles sold today in the market.
“This is really about re-imagining transportation,” Zoox Chief Executive Officer Aicha Evans said in an interview with Bloomberg Television. “Not only do we have the capital required, we have the long-term vision.”
Zoox appears to be further working on commercializing the technology with plans to launch an app-based ride-hailing service in cities like San Francisco, Las Vegas, and other countries. Executives didn’t mention the precise cost but hinted to be “affordable” and competitive with services operated by Uber Technologies Inc. and Lyft Inc. The service launch on the other hand is also not yet announced, however, it is confirmed to not happen in 2021.
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