Why GM’s happy to keep spending billions on self-driving while rivals like Ford abandon ship

At a time when self-driving taxi services like Ford’s Argo are calling it quits, GM’s Cruise is in the autonomous vehicle business for the long haul, the automaker’s president, Mark Reuss, told Insider.

In fact, GM’s self-driving outfit is now embarking on the commercialization phase of its robo-taxi service, after a successful nighttime pilot in San Francisco earlier this year. Cruise is looking to offer rides in Austin and Phoenix, with plans to expand to more cities next year.

At the same time, Cruise continues to develop its purpose-built Origin autonomous vehicle, which executives have said opens more commercial opportunities for the business, like delivery, as well as shuttle-style ridesharing.

Going commercial does not mean becoming profitable, however. Running Cruise costs GM about $2 billion a year.