May 23, 2018

Intel Developing Fleet Of 100 Fully Autonomous Cars

10 August 2017, 01:11 | Kenneth Drake

Ziv Aviram president and CEO of Mobileye speaking at a conference in Jerusalem Nov. 23 2016

Ziv Aviram president and CEO of Mobileye speaking at a conference in Jerusalem Nov. 23 2016

The first vehicles will be deployed later this year, and the fleet will eventually scale to more than 100 automobiles. "The acquisition clearly puts Intel in the conversation". And with its size and combined technology, Intel could become a serious contender in the nascent self-driving vehicle industry, rivaling existing players like Google-spinoff Waymo, Uber and GM's cruise. Intel will run trials of the system under real-world conditions in North America, Europe and Israel, where Mobileye's headquarters are located.

Intel bought 84 percent of Mobileye's shares and expects to see cars with the Intel-Mobileye technology on the road in 2018.

Big investments and outright acquisitions are increasingly prominent in the autonomous-vehicle development race.

Partnerships have not always gone smoothly. It's also a different direction for Mobileye, which had a public spat with Tesla a year ago. Mr. Shashua said publicly that Mobileye was unhappy with the way Tesla was using its technology.

Mobileye NV (NYSE:MBLY) - recently acquired by Intel Corporation (NASDAQ:INTC) - will be building self-driving vehicles. Amnon Shashua, who will be appointed Intel senior VP and Mobileye CTO.

U.S. vehicle rental giant Avis Budget earlier this year announced it will team up with Waymo on the self-driving cars being tested on Arizona roads.

It's unclear which cars will be used as test mules, but Intel did say it would be using multiple different models from different brands.

Such a fleet would give Intel something to rival Google's autonomous driving division, now called Waymo. Uber is running tests in Pittsburgh, while General Motors, Ford Motor and other traditional automakers are creating their own test fleets. In the New York Times, Shashua said that Mobileye's upcoming EyeQ5 processor would make the cars twice as powerful as the current products.

Level 4 autonomy means that the cars will be able to take care of themselves in most driving situations.

The technology will be created to allow automakers to add their own self-driving software. Since Intel isn't a vehicle company, it needs to create self-driving tech that can work in any auto rather than being exclusive to one brand or one model.

Still, it will not be easy for Intel to pull automakers away.

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