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Motional to launch self-driving Hyundai Ioniq 5 taxi in 2023

Hyundai and Motional have unveiled the new self-driving Ioniq 5 Robotaxi, which is planned to go into service in the US in 2023.

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Derek Fung
Derek Fung

The Hyundai Ioniq 5 has got enthusiasts excited, and the retro EV will also form the basis for a self-driving taxi fleet.

Developed by Motional, the new Hyundai Ioniq 5 Robotaxi is said to be a Level 4 autonomous vehicle that’s capable of driving itself without human intervention in situations it was designed to handle, but can still be driven by a person.

To transform the Ioniq 5 into a self-driving taxi, Motional has fitted the electric hatch-slash-crossover with a suite of 30 sensors, including cameras and radar and LIDAR units.

Motional says this hardware gives the car a 360-degree view of the world, and allows for “ultra-long range detection of objects for safe autonomous operation in diverse driving environments”.

Riders across the US will be able to book an Ioniq 5 Robotaxi using the Lyft ride-sharing app from 2023.

According to the companies, the self-driving taxi will available in “multiple” cities, although none have been named.

Interior modifications include illuminated signs, and a touchscreen that allows for route modifications to be made.

In the promotional photographs supplied by the two firms, the Ioniq 5 Robotaxi has a driver’s seat, but no front passenger seat.

If there is problem along the way, “such as road construction or flooding”, the Robotaxi can be controlled remotely by a human to set it on a new path.

There are a few automated taxi services in limited testing service in the US, including Google’s Waymo in the Phoenix metro area, and Cruise — which is funded by GM and Honda — in San Francisco.

Currently Google’s Waymo is operating a publicly accessible automated taxi service in parts of the Phoenix metro area.

More details are set to announced when the Ioniq 5 Robotaxi is unveiled at the Munich motor show, which is due to kick off on September 7.

MORE: Everything Hyundai Ioniq 5
MORE: How autonomous is my car? Levels of self-driving explained

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Derek Fung
Derek Fung

Derek Fung would love to tell you about his multiple degrees, but he's too busy writing up some news right now. In his spare time Derek loves chasing automotive rabbits down the hole. Based in New York, New York, Derek loves to travel and is very much a window not an aisle person.

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