Following Opel’s parent company, GM, two of the world’s largest car companies (Toyota and Volkswagen) have now also entered an alliance with a digital taxi platform. The entire car industry seems to take a new future into consideration, one where people no longer own cars.
Toyota & Uber
Toyota has invested an undisclosed sum into digital taxi platform Uber. One of its project is that it will lease Uber drivers cars at special rates.
“Sharing a ride has huge potential for the future of mobility”, Toyota manager Shigeki Tomoyama said in a statement. “Our collaboration with Uber is designed to discover new ways to provide safe, easy-to-use and attractive mobility services to our consumers.”
Both companies also plan to “exchange knowledge and contribute to each other’s research” when developing autonomous vehicles and digital services.
Volkswagen and Gett
At the same time Toyota revealed its collaboration with Uber, another car giant, German Volkswagen, also announced a deal with Gett, Uber’s Tel Aviv-based competitor. The German car manufacturer will invest 300 million dollars into the Israeli start-up, which is also active in the United Kingdom, Russia and New York City. “We want to be one of the world’s largest mobility providers by 2025”, VW CEO, Mattias Müller, said.
General Motors previously invested 500 million dollars in Lyft, Uber’s largest American competitor. Car giants’ interest in digital taxi platforms is not surprising: a study with 16,000 people earlier this year showed that consumers no longer consider a car as an absolutely necessary possession.