GM’s cruise division doesn’t want to rely on third-party manufacturers for the chips that power its autonomous vehicles — so it’s making its own. Based on information provided by Carl Jenkins, the company’s VP of Hardware Engineering Reutersthe main reason for switching is the high cost associated with paying for chips from other companies.
“Two years ago we paid a lot of money for a GPU from a famous vendor,” Jenkins told the news outlet, citing NVIDIA. He explained that Cruise can’t negotiate because it’s not mass-produced autonomous vehicles yet. Its technology is still in the experimental phase, and while it recently became the first company to be allowed to charge for driverless trips, its operations remain limited. By manufacturing its own chips, Cruise – like Tesla, Apple and Volkswagen before it – is taking its future into its own hands.
Jenkins has revealed that by this point, Cruise had already developed four chips, starting with Horta, which would become the vehicle’s main brain. Dune processes data from sensors while another chip processes information from radar. Another will be announced at a later date. These components will power the Cruise Origin, the self-driving electric shuttle the company first announced in 2020. The Cruise Origin will have no steering wheel or pedals, instead having four interior seats that face each other. It is intended to be used as a divisible vehicle that is on the move at all times, taking passengers to their destinations.
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