Russia's Yandex to test driverless cars in U.S. from next summer

MOSCOW (Reuters) - Russian internet firm Yandex will begin testing its driverless cars in the United States next summer, the company said on Wednesday.

As part of the North American International Auto Show in Detroit, to take place from June 6-21, Yandex will provide a driverless taxi service in the city’s business center.

“The first ten cars will take visitors to the auto show, and then they will stay in the United States for further testing,” a company representative told Reuters.

Yandex’s driverless fleet in Detroit will be created in collaboration with Hyundai Mobis. In July the two companies released their first joint car based on the Hyundai Sonata 2020 model.

Yandex started working on driverless car technology at the end of 2016. The Russian tech hubs of Skolkovo and Innopolis now have working test zones where people can use a driverless taxi.

At the end of 2018 Yandex received a license to test driverless vehicles in Israel, and in January this year it had a driverless car display at the Consumer Electronics Show in the United States.

Yandex is considering whether to conduct an initial public offering (IPO) of its taxi joint venture with U.S. group Uber Technologies Inc, Yandex.Taxi, potentially in Russia and the United States.

No specific details of an IPO have yet been decided.

Reporting by Nadezhda Tsydenova, Writing by Alexander Marrow; Editing by Katya Golubkova and Dale Hudson