Japanese automaker Toyota Motor has teamed up with American ride-sharing company Uber Technologies to develop self-driving vehicles and bring autonomous ride-sharing as a mobility service to the market.

As part of the collaboration, Uber will integrate its self-driving technology together with Toyota Guardian technology into purpose-built Toyota vehicles to be used on Uber’s ride-sharing network.

To further boost its partnership, Toyota has decided to invest $500m in Uber.

Toyota Connected Company president Shigeki Tomoyama said: “Combining efforts with Uber, one of the predominant global ride-sharing and automated driving R&D companies, could further advance future mobility.

“Our goal is to deploy the world’s safest self-driving cars on the Uber network, and this agreement is another significant step towards making that a reality.”

“This agreement and investment marks an important milestone in our transformation to a mobility company as we help provide a path for safe and secure expansion of mobility services like ride-sharing that includes Toyota vehicles and technologies.”

The initial autonomous mobility as a service (Autono-MaaS) fleet will be based on Toyota’s Sienna Minivan platform.

Uber’s Autonomous Driving System and the Toyota Guardian automated safety support system will later be combined with the Autono-MaaS vehicles. Sorry, there are no polls available at the moment.

The Japanese car firm will use Mobility Services Platform (MSPF), its core information infrastructure for connected vehicles.

Piloting of the autonomous driving programme on the US company’s ride-sharing network is scheduled to commence in 2021.

The cars would be ultimately owned and used by third-party autonomous fleet operators.

Uber CEO Dara Khosrowshahi said: “Our goal is to deploy the world’s safest self-driving cars on the Uber network, and this agreement is another significant step towards making that a reality.

“Uber’s advanced technology and Toyota’s commitment to safety and its renowned manufacturing prowess make this partnership a natural fit.”