DiDi to Expand Autonomous Driving Team

Automotive Author: Qasim Khan Jul 06, 2020 05:47 PM (GMT+8)

After successfully obtaining road test qualifications in Beijing, Shanghai, Suzhou, California and other places, the first batch of demonstration application licenses issued by Shanghai DiDi is now looking to level up.

DiDi's self-driving taxi displayed at an exhibition. Image credit: DiDi official website.

DiDi Chuxing plans to hire up to 200 employees this year to strengthen its autonomous driving department and accelerate the expansion of autonomous taxi services in Shanghai and other regions. The CFO of the company said that the autonomous driving department will have 500 to 600 employees by the end of 2020.

Earlier, in late May, SoftBank led a USD 500 million investment in DiDi’s self-driving car unit. At present, the vehicle used by DiDi's autonomous driving is Volvo's XC60 model, which costs more than CNY 300,000. In addition to vehicle costs, it is also equipped with nearly 20 sensors, including various lidars, radars and cameras. The value of these devices even exceeds that of the car itself. The CFO also mentioned that the cost of each self-driving vehicle is more than CNY 1 million. According to DiDi's previously announced goal, by 2030 the platform will have 1 million fully autonomous driverless cars, which will be a huge investment.