Ford is heading to Miami to test its fleet of self-driving cars on the streets of Miami
Think “Miami”, and what comes to your mind? Tourists, palm trees, the neon-bathed stretch of Ocean Drive and South Beach. When you think “autonomous cars”, you probably come up with California, with Silicon Valley at its heart. Miami and self-driving cars haven’t traditionally gone together, until now.
Ford has taken its fleet of self-driving cars for a bit of sunshine and some massive data collection. They invested $1 billion last year into Argo AI, with whom they will collaborate on the research they gather in the Magic City. Their efforts aim to bring an autonomous vehicle to market for deliveries and ride-hailing services by 2021.
Argo isn’t the only one Ford’s partnering up here with either. Domino’s Pizza and Postmates are also in on it, with the notion of testing self-driving vehicles for delivery services. Domino’s isn’t so much developing or hyping its own, special car (remember the DXP?). Rather, it’s testing the idea of how the public will treat a self-driving delivery service. For instance, an employee may load up a self-driving car with Pizzas, then send it out to peoples’ driveways. From that point, they’d just come out and retrieve the pizza. Think of it as a mobile vending machine, perhaps?
Now, apart from conducting the research and getting some street time in their self-driving cars, Ford has to keep them running. To that end, they’ve set up shop to maintain and fine-tune the vehicles and their AI. The cars are also using Ford’s production powertrains at the moment, so they’ll need to be serviced at regular intervals as well.