Dec 6, 2019 - Technology

Self-driving shuttle company May Mobility gets a $50 million lift from Toyota

May Mobility's Little Roady shuttle in Providence, Rhode Island.

May Mobility's Little Roady shuttle in Providence, Rhode Island. Photo: David L. Ryan/The Boston Globe via Getty Images

May Mobility, a self-driving electric shuttle company based in Ann Arbor, Mich., just raised $50 million in a Series B financing round led by Toyota.

Why it matters: The vote of confidence is more than financial. Toyota has also selected May Mobility as one of its partners to develop autonomous transportation-as-a-service for future mobility platforms.

  • Details of that collaboration haven't been disclosed, but one possibility is that Toyota will incorporate May Mobility's self-driving technology in its e-Palette shuttle platform, first unveiled at CES in 2017.

Background: May Mobility operates AV shuttles (still with trained backup drivers) in Detroit and Grand Rapids in Michigan, and Providence, Rhode Island.

  • Rather than sell its shuttles to customers, May Mobility contracts with cities, transit agencies and corporations to provide short trips on fixed routes in dense urban areas.
  • To date, its fleet of 25 electric shuttles has provided more than 170,000 revenue-generating rides.

The bottom line: May Mobility has raised $83.6 million since its founding in January 2017.

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