Japanese automaker Honda has signed an agreement to acquire a 5.7% stake valued at $750m in Cruise, an autonomous vehicles unit of General Motors (GM).

Additionally, Honda will contribute $2bn to the autonomous vehicle project over the next 12 years, which aims to transform mobility through the large-scale deployment of autonomous vehicle technology.

The Japanese carmaker will work with the two companies to fund and develop a purpose-built autonomous vehicle for GM’s unit.

All three partners have further agreed to search for global opportunities for commercial deployment of the Cruise network.

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Honda’s latest investment brings the post-money valuation of Cruise to $14.6bn.

“We can provide Cruise with some of the world’s best design, engineering, and manufacturing expertise, and global reach to establish them as the leader in autonomous vehicle technology.”

General Motors chairman and CEO Mary Barra said: “This is the logical next step in General Motors and Honda’s relationship, given our joint work on electric vehicles, and our close integration with Cruise.

“Together, we can provide Cruise with the world’s best design, engineering and manufacturing expertise, and global reach to establish them as the leader in autonomous vehicle technology, while they move to deploy self-driving vehicles at scale.”

GM acquired the leading autonomous vehicle company in 2016 for approximately $1bn. GM has acquired a large collection of self-driving test data and other information that Honda can use to enhance self-driving technology.

Honda executive vice-president and representative director COO Seiji Kuraishi said: “Honda chose to collaborate with Cruise and General Motors based on their leadership in autonomous and electric vehicle technology and our shared vision of a zero-emissions and zero-collision world.

“We will complement their strengths through our expertise in space efficiency and design to develop the most desirable and effective shared autonomous vehicle.”