Robo Taxi service launched on public roads in Singapore

August 25, 2016 // By Christoph Hammerschmidt
Not Google, not Uber is the first to offer self-driving taxis to the public. And not BMW, Audi or Volvo: Software start-up and MIT spin-off nuTonomy is offering such services on public roads and in an urban environment. In a Singapore business, district, the software company has launched robo-taxi services in a public trial.

The company with offices in the US and in Singapore invites select Singapore citizens to use nuTonomy’s smart-hailing smartphone app to book a ride in the self-driving taxis. The vehicles are controlled by NuTonomy’s software running on a complex yet powerful sensing and computing environment. Two vehicle types are available – the Renault Zoe as well as the Mitsubishi i-MiEV, and of course both are driven electrically. The rides are free of charge. To assure the safety of the vehicles, a nuTonomy engineer is accompanying the passengers during their rides; he observes the system performance and can intervene if something is going wrong with the algorithms.


Throughout the trial, nuTonomy is collecting and evaluating data related to software system performance, routing efficiency, the booking process, and the overall passenger experience. This data will enable nuTonomy to refine its software in preparation for the launch of a widely-available commercial robo-taxi service in Singapore scheduled for 2018.


Earlier this month, nuTonomy was selected by the Singapore Land Transport Authority (LTA) as an R&D partner, to support the development of a commercial AV service in Singapore. This trial represents the first, rapid result of this partnership. nuTonomy is the first, and to date only, private enterprise approved by the Singapore government to test AVs on public roads.

In addition to Singapore, nuTonomy is operating self-driving cars in Michigan and the United Kingdom, where it tests software in partnership with major automotive manufacturers such as Jaguar Land Rover.

Click here to watch a video of nuTonomy’s RoboTaxi:

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