Toyota buys self-driving car industry from Lyft

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Toyota is taking over the self-driving car industry from Lyft. The deal is worth $550 million. With the acquisition, the Japanese car manufacturer wants to further focus on the development of autonomous vehicles.

Toyota announced the deal on Tuesday. The self-driving car division is planned to become part of the carmaker’s Woven Planet project. With this project, Toyota aims to develop autonomous vehicles. Toyota also wants to build a ‘smart’ city called Woven City.

The acquisition is expected to close in the third quarter of 2021. The 300 Lyft employees currently working on the development of self-driving cars are making the switch to Toyota. The employees, together with the current Woven Planet team, will continue to work on the development of autonomous vehicles.

With the deal, Lyft appears to be definitively abandoning its ambitions for developing an autonomous vehicle. The company started developing an autonomous vehicle four years ago. Lyft said in a statement to Reuters that the industry will save $100 million a year in sales of the autonomous vehicle industry.

Lyft is a major competitor to Uber in the United States. Uber also sold its autonomous vehicle development division. At the end of last year, Uber announced that it would sell the division to start-up Aurora.

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