Technology

Toyota e-Palette Is A Self-Driving EV For Deliveries And Ride Hailing

It could make pizza delivery guys jobless.

The annual Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas is the ideal venue for technology companies, which now very much includes automakers, to show off interesting concepts and ideas that may seem far-fetched to some. For others, however, it’s the near future. Toyota, for example, has unveiled its e-Palette Concept, a fully autonomous EV featuring an open control interface allowing for partner companies to install their own automated driving system. Essentially, Toyota provides the shell while other companies give it brains to move.

“The automobile industry is clearly amidst its most dramatic period of change as technologies like electrification, connected and automated driving are making significant progress. Toyota remains committed to making ever better cars. Just as important, we are developing mobility solutions to help everyone enjoy their lives, and we are doing our part to create an ever-better society for the next 100 years and beyond.” Toyota plans to begin testing the e-Palette concept in various regions, including the US, in 2020. Three sizes will eventually be offered to partner companies: a bus-sized version, a shuttle and a small delivery vehicle specifically to be used on sidewalks.

Toyota also announced that it’ll be working with major global companies Amazon, Pizza Hut, Mazda (yes, really), Uber and Chinese ride-hailing company Didi Chuxing Technology to develop the necessary software and hardware. It was just a few weeks ago when Toyota announced it aims to sell more than 5.5 million electrified vehicles annually by 2030, and will have at least 10 battery electric vehicles on sale worldwide by the early 2020s.

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