Uber is attempting to create their very own autonomous car program, hoping to remove problematic human drivers along with things like wages and insurance premiums. Even though Uber has made some progress, investors are beginning to think that Uber should just give up on their self-driving dreams.
Some investors have suggested to Uber that it should sell off its AV development program, The Information reports, citing a source familiar with the matter. An Uber spokesperson declined to comment on the report.
The Information reports that Uber has spent between $125 million and $200 million per quarter on its AV development over the last 18 months, totaling “at least” $2 billion since the program’s inception. Uber does not separate its AV-related finances in its quarterly earnings reports, but The Information claims that the losses from its self-driving unit comprise between 15 and 30 percent of Uber’s quarterly losses.
In that sense, it’s not hard to see why some investors might be concerned. Uber is not currently pulling a profit, and this side of its business is not helping matters. The company has not yet produced a viably profitable autonomous-vehicle platform. It’s not building an entire car from scratch, but rather a platform of software and hardware that would enable autonomy on traditional vehicles, which it could possibly then sell to other firms hoping to avoid the time and money sinks of full-on development. Uber has relied largely on Volvo XC90s during its development thus far.
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