Cruise LLC, the self-driving car unit backed and majority owned by General Motors Co., signed a deal with Dubai’s Roads and Transit Authority to begin operating self-driving taxis in the city in 2023.
Cruise and Crown Prince Hamdan Bin Mohammed announced the agreement in a statement, making the company the exclusive operator of these services in the largest United Arab Emirates city until 2029. The company will start running a small number or vehicles in two years and plans to have 4,000 driverless Origin shuttles in the emirate by 2030, said Mattar Mohammed Al Tayer, chairman of the roads authority.
The agreement will give Cruise a presence in its first location outside the U.S. Cruise is working to get driverless services going as a revenue-generating business in San Francisco before the Dubai launch, probably using a self-driving version of GM’s Chevrolet Bolt electric car as an autonomous taxi. The company didn’t say when it will start charging for services.