Home Transports Argo AI Aquires Permit to Test Self-driving Cars in California

Argo AI Aquires Permit to Test Self-driving Cars in California

Argo AI, a self-driving vehicle startup that made headlines back in 2017 with $1 billion in financing from Ford Motor Co., recently received a permit for testing its self-driving cars in California.

The permit, which was granted by the California Department of Motor Vehicles, is for only two drivers and one vehicle.

According to the records held by the California Department of Motor Vehicles, the permit allows Argo AI to test its vehicles on public roads.

According to the self-driving startup’s spokesperson, the company is set to have several cars on roads close to its offices in Palo Alto, California, as testing commences.

Unlike other autonomous driving vehicle companies, California is neither the first nor the third market where the self-driving startup is conducting tests for its technology.

In fact, California is the fifth testing site for Argo AI.

SEE MORE: World’s Top 33 Companies Working on Self Driving Cars

For research and development purposes, the company is carrying out tests in locations such as Mich, Dearborn, and Pittsburgh while other tests are being done in Washington, D.C., and Miami in a bid to expedite Ford’s commercial service that is set to begin in 2021.

For several months now, Argo has had cars on the streets of DC for road-mapping purposes.

In the past, Ford has said that the third city on its blueprint to provide commercial services backed by self-driving cars would be revealed later in 2019.

However, the new testing taking place in Palo Alto does not necessarily show that the Bay Area will be next in line for this particular service.

Spread out across its five testing sites, Argo AI is expected to have over 100 cars in its testing fleet by the close of 2019.

Peter Rander and Bryan Salesky, former engineering head of Uber Advanced Technologies Group and former self-driving project veteran at Google respectively, are behind the inception of Argo AI.

In its short life, Argo AI has managed to acquire, Princeton Lightwave, a LiDAR company.

Although Argo AI operates as an independent entity, Ford is a leading backer and has several seats on the company’s board.

SEE MORE: Ford Set to Invest $4B on Self-Driving Cars by 2023

Currently, the startup is creating high-definition maps and the virtual driver system, specifically built for Ford’s autonomous driving cars.

So far, it is not yet clear whether Argo AI’s intentions to test in California have anything to do with its association with Ford, are part of the company’s testing program or are related to a new customer.

Nevertheless, Argo AI is itself on becoming the 62nd company to acquire a permit to carry out tests in California.

Argo AI is a Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania AI-based company on a mission to make transportation safer, more convenient, affordable and accessible for all people.

The company was founded to deal with one of the challenging applications in AI, robotics, and computer science: self-driving cars.

Aside from its headquarters, the company boasts engineering hubs in the Bay Area of California.

Through collaborating with trusted automakers and academic communities, Argo AI is combining the newest advancements in computer vision and machine learning with more than a century of hardware development, manufacturing expertise, and safety engineering.

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KC Cheung
KC Cheung has over 18 years experience in the technology industry including media, payments, and software and has a keen interest in artificial intelligence, machine learning, deep learning, neural networks and its applications in business. Over the years he has worked with some of the leading technology companies, building and growing dynamic teams in a fast moving international environment.
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