GM Takes A Pause On Production Of Cruise Origin Robotaxi Amid Suspended Operations


Amidst ongoing scrutiny from regulators and suspended operations, Cruise, the autonomous vehicle company, has made the decision to halt production of its purpose-built robotaxi, the Origin. This setback comes as Cruise faces increased challenges in gaining public trust and regulatory approval.

Key Takeaway

Cruise’s decision to halt production of the Origin robotaxi reflects the company’s commitment to rebuilding public trust in the wake of recent incidents. As autonomous technology advances, gaining regulatory approval and ensuring safety remain significant challenges for companies in the self-driving industry.

California Suspension and Rebuilding Trust

California regulators recently suspended Cruise’s operations after it was discovered that a pedestrian had been dragged by a Cruise vehicle following an accident involving a human-driven car. As a result, Cruise voluntarily paused all driverless operations in other markets, including Phoenix, Austin, Houston, and Miami, in an effort to rebuild public trust.

In response to concerns raised during an all-hands meeting, Cruise CEO Kyle Vogt addressed the decision to halt driverless operations and the production of the Origin. Vogt acknowledged that the situation is uncertain, stating, “because a lot of this is in flux, we did make the decision with GM to pause production on the Origin.”

Possible Layoffs and Future Impact

While Vogt did not specifically mention layoffs during the all-hands meeting, a previous meeting revealed that potential layoffs could occur due to the suspended operations. This uncertainty may affect not only operations staff but also those working on the development of the Origin itself.

The Origin, a boxy-looking vehicle devoid of a steering wheel or pedals, is a key component of Cruise’s vision to scale autonomously in cities across the United States and beyond. Jointly developed by GM, Cruise, and Honda, the Origin has undergone testing on public roads in Austin and is slated for use in a robotaxi service in Dubai and Japan.

Future Prospects and Fleet Availability

Despite setbacks, Vogt remains optimistic about the future. Previously claiming that Cruise was mere days away from receiving approval for mass production of the Origin, Vogt’s hopes have yet to materialize. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has yet to provide further details on the matter.

It is worth noting that Cruise currently possesses hundreds of Origin vehicles. While production may be paused for now, Vogt believes that the existing fleet will be more than sufficient once operations resume.

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