Jaguar’s deal to supply up to 20,000 I-Paces to Waymo, Google’s self-driving car arm, makes it “more likely” that the UK could be selected as the firm’s first European country for testing according to its CEO John Krafcik.
Talking at the New York motor show Krafcik admitted that Waymo had a “long-term” goal to extend its testing beyond the US, where it has focused until now, and that it was in talks with “various European cities” on where to expand its operations.
Asked if the deal with Jaguar Land Rover - described by both sides as a first step in a longer-term partnership - could boost the chances of a UK city being chosen, Krafcik said: “The UK is very interesting, and the relationship with Jaguar Land Rover makes it more interesting - it certainly makes it a more viable early launch location.”
Krafcik also confirmed that all future partnerships with established car makers would only encompass plug-in hybrid or electric powertrains. “We like the electric technology and it makes sense to build our operations around the high voltage technology that’s now available,” he said.