Addison Lee to launch self-driving taxis in London by 2021

The private hire taxi service has teamed up with software developer Oxbotica to get autonomous vehicles on the road in three years

Addison Lee has formed a strategic partnership with autonomous vehicle software developer Oxbotica in order to get self-driving taxis on the road in London by 2021.

The taxi company wants to offer affordable ride-sharing to passengers “currently underserved by existing driven transport modes”, as well as exploring ideas for corporate shuttles, airport transfers and campus-based services.

The two organisations will pool their expertise, technology and resources with the aim of creating safe and environmentally friendly self-driving taxis in three years’ time.

The project will create detailed, digital maps of more than 250,000 miles of road in the UK capital, recording the position of every kerb, road sign, landmark and traffic light.

Driverless cars: everything you need to know about autonomous vehicles

Andy Boland, CEO of Addison Lee Group, commented: “Urban transport will change beyond recognition in the next 10 years with the introduction of self-driving services, and we intend to be at the very forefront of this change by acting now.

“Autonomous technology holds the key to many of the challenges we face in transport. By providing ride-sharing services, we can help address congestion, free up space used for parking and improve urban air quality through zero-emission vehicles.

“We are proud to be partnering with a British technology pioneer and leader in autonomous vehicle technology – Oxbotica – and together we will revolutionise the way people get around cities.”

Ultimate guide to car sharing, car clubs and ride-sharing

Graeme Smith, CEO of Oxbotica, added: “This represents a huge leap towards bringing autonomous vehicles into mainstream use on the streets of London, and eventually in cities across the United Kingdom and beyond.

“Our partnership with Addison Lee Group represents another milestone for the commercial deployment of our integrated autonomous vehicle and fleet management software systems in complex urban transport conditions. Together, we are taking a major step in delivering the future of mobility.”

Are you excited by an autonomous future? Let us know your thoughts below...

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