Back in 2016, the rideshare service’s CEO John Zimmer predicted that most of Lyft’s rides would be self-driving in five years according to a Medium post.
While Zimmer’s prediction proved wrong, the organization’s co-founder is still optimistic about the company’s self-driving future.
It has launched self-driving vehicle services in Las Vegas, Nevada, Miami, Florida, and Austin, Texas, with safety operators in front seats.
And the transport company’s CEO says he now expects to offer true driverless trips in the next two to three years.
Zimmer said: “Creating a car that sees better than humans and reacts better than humans is very difficult.
“And so it’s just taking more time, but I don’t have doubts that it will happen,” CNBC reports.
Zimmer added that he thinks that Lyft will build a hybrid network of autonomous electric vehicles to meet its customers’ needs.
The Lyft CEO said: “They [driverless cars] won’t work for all use cases for a very long time.
“It’ll [self-driving vehicles] do 5 percent of the trips — 95 percent of the time, you’re going to rely on a rideshare driver.
“So that’s all going to happen within the Lyft network, and we’ll scale up with our autonomous partners.”
Lyft’s current autonomous (self-driving) testing contains safety drivers in the front seat for passenger protection during emergencies.
The rideshare service recently started offering self-driving trips in Austin for the same price as its human-led journeys.
Passengers can unlock the vehicles’ doors and initiate their trip while two humans monitor the journey in the car’s front seats.
Lyft hasn’t stated when they’ll remove their front seat safety operators, but they’ve been testing passenger-less autonomous vehicles with Argo AI since May, NBC reports.