Autonomous vehicle tech company, Pony.ai, has reportedly secured a sum of $100 million in an extension of its Series C funding initiative. The capital brings the company’s overall raised amount to more than $1 billion at a post-money valuation amounting to $5.3 billion, up from a sum of $3 billion as of February 2020.
According to reliable sources, PonyAlpha, the company’s full-stack hardware platform, is known for leveraging cameras, lidars, and radars for keeping tabs on hurdles up to 200 meters from its autonomous cars. The platform is the foundation for the company’s entirely autonomous trucks and freight delivery solution, which began testing back in April 2019 and is utilized in test cars in Guangzhou and Beijing in China and in Fremont in California.
Established in 2016, Pony.ai was founded by Tiancheng Lou, who worked at the autonomous car project of Google X, before it was expatiated into Waymo, and James Peng, ex-Chief Architect of Baidu. The two intend to develop level 4 autonomous cars that are capable of operating without human oversight under select conditions, as per the definition of the Society of Automotive Engineers.
The cars will be built for predictable environments comprising small towns, industrial parks, and college campuses with a tentative deployment window of numerous years from now.
Back in August 2020, Pony.ai had entered into a collaborative deal with Bosch for the purpose of exploring the future of automotive maintenance and repair for autonomous fleets. Bosch’s North American Automotive Aftermarket division and Pony.ai plan for the development and testing of fleet maintenance solutions for commercial robo-taxi initiatives. As per Pony.ai, it began piloting a maintenance initiative with Bosch in the Bay Area of San Francisco in early July 2020.
Pony.ai has partnership deals with GAC Group, a leading Guangzhou-based automaker, and FAW, a Chinese a state-owned auto group, for the development of level 4 robo-taxi vehicles. The company also has a joint partnership with On Semiconductor for prototyping processing technologies and image sensing for machine vision.