March 18, 2020 / 2:09 AM / 11 days ago

Toyota partners with China's Momenta on high definition maps for autonomous cars

FILE PHOTO: A logo of Toyota is pictured at Bangkok Auto Salon 2019 in Bangkok, Thailand, July 4, 2019. REUTERS/Athit Perawongmetha

BEIJING/SHANGHAI (Reuters) - Japanese automaker Toyota Motor Corp has partnered with Chinese autonomous driving startup Momenta to develop a high definition (HD) mapping platform in China for autonomous driving vehicles, Momenta said in a statement.

Maps are key to allowing autonomous vehicles to locate themselves. Toyota’s research arm is developing its so-called Automated Mapping Platform (AMP) to generate data for accurate and updated maps, which it said will also be accessible to industry developers.

Momenta was established three years ago and is backed by German’s Daimler. It is testing autonomous cars in Beijing and Suzhou and will provide its camera-based HD mapping technologies to help commercialize Toyota’s AMP in China, according to the statement.

Toyota autonomous vehicle partnerships also include a venture with SoftBank Corp and an investment in robotaxi developer Uber ATG.

It has invested $400 million in Pony.ai, another autonomous company with a Chinese background, and $600 million in Chinese ride-hailing giant Didi Chuxing and a new joint venture to develop mobility services.

Reporting by Yilei Sun and Brenda Goh; Editing by Kirsten Donovan

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