Ford And Baidu Invest In Self-Driving Car Tech Company

Baidu and Ford have invested heavily in Velodyne LiDAR Inc, a company that develops technology allowing cars to drive without any human input. The combined 150 million US dollars from Ford and Baidu will go towards manufacturing the next generation of Velodyne's LiDAR (Light Detection and Ranging), which is currently used on Ford's self-driving research cars. Whilst Ford looks to increase its fleet of research vehicles from 10 to 30, Baidu is also looking to expand its autonomous car branch by increasing the size of its research team, which will focus on robotics and machine learning. Baidu is already testing vehicles through a partnership with BMW in China, with Baidu's Autonomous Driving Unit saying that the investment will “accelerate efforts in autonomous driving”.