Self-driving Aurora maps out route to profit

Self-driving startup Aurora says it's on a path to turn costly self-driving vehicles into a profitable business.

The U.S. firm has been showcasing its technology to investors this week.

Ahead of a public listing it hopes will provide around $2 billion in additional funding.

The move comes as several autonomous trucking companies prepare to launch driverless routes in the coming years.

And turn self-driving into a profitable reality.

Aurora wants to provide both autonomous freight trucking and robotaxi services.

But autonomous vehicle companies have yet to generate significant revenue, despite investors pouring billions into their development.

Trucking has emerged a key opportunity to commercialise AVs though.

It's been fuelled by growth in e-commerce as well as a shortage of drivers.

Drivers currently account for more than 40% of per-mile costs and can drive no more than 11 hours per day.

Those restrictions do not apply to automated trucks.

Aurora plans to launch fully driverless trucks at the end of 2023, with robotaxis to follow a year later.

But it faces fierce competition from the likes of well-funded startups including Alphabet's Waymo.

And Argo, which is backed by Ford and Volkswagen.

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