Toyota invests US$400 million in Pony.ai to expedite driverless technology
JAPAN's Toyota has invested US$400 million in Chinese start-up Pony
JAPAN's Toyota has invested US$400 million in Chinese start-up Pony.ai as the world's second-largest carmaker joins forces to develop self-driving vehicles, reports London's Financial Times.
The latest funding, which totals $462 million, values the Chinese company at $3 billion, giving Toyota a 13 per cent stake and a seat on Pony.ai's board.
It follows a flurry of investments by the Japanese carmaker over the past two years in ride-hailing groups including Uber, China's Didi Chuxing and south-east Asia's Grab aimed at building alliances outside the traditional automotive sector.
The investment also bolsters Toyota's recent efforts to boost its presence in China, which consultancy McKinsey reckons has the potential to become the world's largest market for autonomous vehicles.