General Motors (GM)has been quietly going about developing its autonomous vehicle technology and is closer than others
When you’re trading stocks online, you’re benefiting from technology that enables you to actively participate in the stock market from the comfort of your home. And technology also plays a significant role in the rising or dropping of the stock value of tech stocks, industrial stocks and automotive stocks.
The race for autonomous cars is heating up, though it was more the tech companies such as Google ($GOOG, $GOOGL), Apple ($AAPL) and electric car manufacturer Tesla Motors ($TSLA) that were in the headlines with regard to this than the conventional car companies. But Ford ($F) has joined the equation.
GM Has Quietly Gone about Its Autonomous Car Research
General Motors ($GM) has also been making all efforts to lead the way in the development of autonomous cars. It has been quiet about it, keeping a low profile and not appearing in the autonomous vehicles headlines. But on close examination, the company is significantly ahead than earlier thought. That should crucially pacify and encourage investors since GM’s Q4 results have been gloomy.
Much of this information comes from reports from various automobile manufacturers released by the California Department of Motor Vehicles that indicate GM has been quietly making the necessary expenditure and acquisitions for leading the race in self-driving car tech. This comes when General Motors was thought to be not making much headway in its quest for developing an autonomous car. On the contrary, these reports indicate the company has significantly strengthened its position in this technology.
Buying Cruise Automation and Tying up with Lyft
In March 2016 GM purchased Cruise Automation for over $1 billion. The latter is testing its autonomous driving on some Chevrolet Bolt EVs. It initially had only two such vehicles licensed in California in early 2016, and those vehicles were Nissan Leafs. After GM’s acquisition though, Cruise has increased its number of licensed vehicles to 20 and shifted to Chevy Bolts. So GM is right up there with this technology. It could be making more efforts in this direction. And the company could tie up the Cruise program with its Lyft ride sharing collaboration. Autonomous cars and ride sharing are beneficial to each other.
And the use of the Bolt electric vehicle also cements GM’s place in the growing electric car market, with the Bolt being a long range electric vehicle designed with urban commuting and ride sharing in mind.
Though hiring more staff and setting apart resources for this could cause greater spending, the sheer potential of the technology being tested would benefit shareholders in the long term. This is certainly a stock worth watching for.