Alphabet’s autonomous driving company, Waymo, announced today that it’s getting into the ride-sharing business—and that it’s building a special car to do it.
The company partnered with Jaguar Land Rover to make a completely autonomous, electric car, called the Jaguar I-Pace. Waymo is launching the service first in Phoenix, Arizona. Anyone can hail a ride from the autonomous car in the city starting later this year, though the Jags will not be for sale for the general public.
Waymo’s news comes after the first death caused by an autonomously-driven vehicle owned by Uber just nine days ago, in Tempe, Arizona. When asked about the accident during the press conference, Waymo CEO John Krafcik noted Waymo’s extensive testing, saying that consumer confidence is paramount for autonomous cars to be successful.
Some 20,000 new self-driving I-Paces will be added to Waymo’s ride-sharing fleet, allowing the company to ramp up to 1 million trips per day over the next two years. Krafcik said the company will announce the second market to receive the service later this year.
Quartz previously discovered documents detailing the company’s plans to build a ride-sharing platform from its autonomous car technology. The company spent 2017 bolstering the software that controls its fleet of autonomous minivans, on average driving four times longer than its competitors without needing a human to take control of the car.
More cars on the road also means more data for the company; every decision an autonomous car makes can be used to train the software powering future models.