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Toyota steers $400 million to self-driving startup Pony.ai

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Pony.ai, a self-driving startup based in Silicon Valley and Guangzhou, China, is deepening its ties to Toyota. The two companies announced a pilot program to test self-driving cars on public roads in two Chinese cities, Beijing and Shanghai. The Japanese auto giant plans to invest $400 million in Pony.ai, valuing the startup at $3 billion.

Pony.ai has been working with Toyota since 2019 on public autonomous vehicle testing. With this new investment, their relationship will become even closer, with the automaker and the startup “co-developing” mobility products like “mobility services.”

Pony.ai has been testing robot taxis in Beijing and Guangzhou since late 2018 as well as in Fremont and Irvine, California. The startup...

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