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GM’s Driverless Cruise Cars Head to Arizona, Texas

GM’s Driverless Cruise Cars Head to Arizona, Texas

Cruise is bringing driverless rides to Austin and Phoenix later this year.

The GM-owned company plans to expand its robotaxi service, which launched recently in California, into new markets in Texas and Arizona within the next 90 days, the AP reports(Opens in a new window).

“Our team is going from zero footprint in Austin (no test vehicles or maps) to driverless rides in [about] 90 days,” Cruise CEO Kyle Vogt tweeted(Opens in a new window). “We’ve been prepping for scaling the last couple years, glad to see that work paying off.”

In March, GM’s Cruise and Alphabet’s Waymo got the green light to charge Californians for rides in autonomous vehicles—with safety drivers present. Driverless cabs have been roaming the state’s streets for years, testing features and giving free lifts to willing travelers. “Drivered Deployment” permits, however, allow firms to actually generate income from their services.

San Franciscans may have spotted Cruise cars traveling at speeds up to 30mph between 10 p.m. and 6 a.m., while Waymo is operating in parts of San Francisco and San Mateo counties at speeds as high as 65mph. Neither is allowed out during heavy fog or heavy rain.

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Cruise’s arrival in Phoenix will mean competition for Waymo, which has been billing local passengers since 2020. Vogt offered no further details except to say that he “can’t wait to hear more ‘first ride stories,” which he called the “best part of working at Cruise.”

This week’s announcement comes three months after a Cruise crash that injured two people and inspired a software update, though the driver of the other (non-autonomous) car was found to be at fault for the collision.

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