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A New Path for Motional

May 07, 2024 Karl Iagnemma, President and CEO

Since Motional’s inception in 2020, it’s been our mission to make driverless vehicles a safe, reliable, and accessible reality. And with support from Motional’s shareholders – Aptiv and Hyundai Motor Group – we’ve made significant strides towards this goal.

During the last few years, we’ve introduced the all-electric, IONIQ 5 robotaxi, the world’s first fully-integrated Level 4 autonomous vehicle to be mass-produced with a smart, flexible cell-based production system. The IONIQ 5 robotaxi is also one of the first autonomous vehicles to be certified under the U.S. Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards. We’ve established industry-leading commercial partnerships with major ride-hail companies including Uber and Lyft to deploy our AVs on their networks. We’ve introduced driverless technology to the public – many for the first time – having completed more than 100,000 autonomous rides in Las Vegas and thousands of autonomous food deliveries in Los Angeles. Through all of this, we’ve become a leading name in the AV industry with a steadfast commitment to transforming personal mobility.

 To move our mission forward, we recently announced the closing of a $475M round of funding from Hyundai Motor Group. This new round demonstrates the Group’s belief in the strategic importance of autonomous technology and its confidence in Motional’s ability to capitalize on the tremendous market opportunity enabled by autonomy.  

With that said, large-scale driverless deployment will not happen overnight. Driverless vehicles will enter the market when the technology has evolved, and – just as importantly – when the business case for autonomous deployment is clear. While we’re excited by our pace of technical progress, and our initial commercial deployments have yielded valuable insights, large-scale deployment of AVs remains a goal for the future, not the present.

In collaboration with Motional’s shareholders, we’ve updated our strategic plan to focus resources on the continued development and generalization of our core driverless technology, while de-emphasizing near-term commercial deployments and ancillary activities. This updated strategy requires a streamlining of our teams, resulting in a reduction in staff across the business. The team members leaving Motional have my deepest appreciation for their contributions to our goals. 

Having spent my entire career in developing robotic and autonomous technology, I remain convinced that AVs will have a transformative, positive impact on the way we move, with the capability to dramatically improve roadway safety, reduce emissions, and enhance the overall experience of personal transportation. I’m confident in the road ahead and Motional’s ability to achieve its mission of making driverless vehicles a reality.