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April 24, 2019

Waymo to reuse American Axle factory for autonomous vehicles

Google parent company Alphabet's self-driving unit Waymo will build autonomous vehicles in Detroit, CEO John Krafcik has said.

By Olly Wehring

Google parent company Alphabet's self-driving unit Waymo will build autonomous vehicles in Detroit, CEO John Krafcik has said.

According to engadget.com he said the company would reuse an existing facility in the motor city which would be in operation by mid-2019.

The company had announced last January it had chosen southeast Michigan as the location of its new factory to mass produce L4 autonomous vehicles.

The Detroit Free Press said the company would create between 100 to 400 jobs and would receive incentives from the Michigan Economic Development Corporation.

"We will partner with American Axle & Manufacturing to repurpose an existing facility, bringing a workforce back to an area where jobs in the automotive industry were recently lost," Krafcik said.

He said the location would allow Waymo to take advantage of Michigan's strong talent pool in engineering, operations and fleet coordination, according to engadget.

The announcement followed GM's decision to stop Chevy Volt production at Detroit-Hamtramck in January 2020.

Waymo, along with Uber, General Motors and Tesla, are currently in a race to be the first to make their autonomous vehicles available nationwide, engadget noted.

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