Home Compliance Ford Forms AI Subsidiary to Focus on ‘Hands-Free, Eyes-Off-the-Road’ Driving

Ford Forms AI Subsidiary to Focus on ‘Hands-Free, Eyes-Off-the-Road’ Driving

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Ford Motor Company launches Latitude AI, a wholly owned subsidiary focused on developing hands-free, road-eyed autonomous driving systems for millions of vehicles.

With Latitude, Ford adds a team of machine learning, robotics, software, sensors, systems engineering and operations talent to help the automaker grow and expand its self-driving technology development efforts. This includes advances on the Ford BlueCruise, which has already amassed a lot. Over 50 million miles of hands-free driving.

Latitude is reimagining the customer experience by automating driving during times of boredom, stress, and discomfort, such as traffic jams and long highways. According to traffic analytics firm INRIX, the average U.S. driver is stuck in traffic for nearly 100 hours a year.

Doug Field, Chief Advanced Product Development and Technology Officer, Ford Motor Company, said: “Customers using BlueCruise are already experiencing the benefits of hands-off driving. It’s about making travel safer, less stressful, more fun, but ultimately giving our guests a part of their day.

Latitude’s formation supports Ford’s strategic shift last year to focus on self-driving technology for privately owned vehicles. Ford has hired approximately 550 former Argo AI employees in the areas of machine learning and robotics, cloud platforms, mapping, sensors and computational systems, test operations, systems and safety engineering. The Latitude team has leveraged much of its autonomous driving experience, including software development tools and infrastructure, to work on advanced driver assistance systems (ADAS).

Ford’s Executive Director of ADAS Technologies, Sammy Omari, will also serve as Latitude’s CEO. Peter Carr has been appointed Chief Technology Officer to oversee Latitude’s product and technology development, and David Gollob has been appointed President and will be responsible for business operations.

“We believe autonomous driving technology will help improve safety while unlocking a whole new customer experience that reduces stress, and in the future will help free up time for drivers to focus on choices,” says Omari. “It will further complement and strengthen Ford’s in-house global ADAS team to develop future driver assistance technologies and ultimately realize the many benefits of automation.”

Latitude is headquartered in Pittsburgh with engineering hubs in Dearborn, Michigan and Palo Alto, California. The company also plans to operate a highway test track facility in Greenville, South Carolina.

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