Lyft's Self-Driving Car Division

Posted by: RideGuru Team Jul 28, 2017
Updated Jan 16, 2020


lyft self driving cars

Lyft has been working on their self-driving cars for a while now, among a list of other companies involved in the autonomous vehicle race.

The goal of this “movement”, as some may call it, is to help end personal car ownership and decrease the number of vehicles on the road. Less vehicles on the road leads to positive impact on the environment by reducing pollution and greenhouse emissions.

Lyft is one of the major companies at the forefront of this “transportation revolution”. The goal of this revolution is to improve communities, and make everyone have a better quality life. The way Lyft thinks this new life is possible is through a healthy combination of options for riders: both with drivers and without.

Recently, Lyft announced the next steps of their plan to make the “hybrid ecosystem” a reality. Lyft opened its own self-driving division that is working on the development of an open self-driving system. Lyft previously had partnerships with a number of companies in the self-driving car race, including with GM/Cruise, Waymo/Google, and Nutonomy. However, this new self-driving car division is unique to Lyft, and housed in Palo Alto, California.

The self-driving division will now be what they call the core of their business. It is more than just a project for Lyft – they are working effortlessly to make this a reality, and create the best self-driving technology they can. Currently, 10% of engineers at Lyft are focused solely on developing this technology.

Lyft promises to always operate a hybrid network of vehicles. They claim they will not take away or reduce their human-driven vehicles, or drivers. The hope is that with more self-driving vehicles on the road, more people will steer away from personal car ownership and use a ride-sharing service instead.

The hybrid system Lyft is creating will operate based on the type of ride a passenger requests. When a passenger requests a ride that a self-driving car is capable of completing, they will send one to complete the trip. On the other hand, in circumstances where the passenger requests a trip where self-driving cars are unable to navigate, they will have a driver.

Another unique part of Lyft's self-driving car division is that they plan to make all of the data they collect publically available to companies working on creating self-driving cars. Lyft is working towards being the number one company in the self-driving car race, and they seem to be taking all the right steps!



Felicia is a Multimedia Guru at RideGuru. She recently graduated from Bentley University with a B.S. in Marketing and minor in Computer Information Systems. She is an avid rideshare user who enjoys both domestic and international travel.



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