You probably haven’t heard of Aurora Innovation. And there’s no real reason you should have.

But you’ll definitely have heard of the two firms that, at this year’s CES, announced partnerships with the tiny company to use its autonomous technology: Volkswagen and Hyundai. Now, Chinese car maker Byton has confirmed that it's also working with Aurora, emphasising the nascent company's global reach.

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That two major car groups, as well as a fast-growing new one, have reached a deal with a relatively unproven company is unprecedented in an industry known for being conservative. Aurora was established just over a year ago with only five staff.

Three of them initially worked out of co-founder Chris Urmson’s home in Palo Alto, California, with two operating from an old restaurant in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.