Last October, Argo AI – an autonomous vehicle technology company backed by Ford and Volkswagen – announced that it would be shutting down as The Blue Oval determined that Level 4 and 5 self-driving tech wouldn’t be profitable anytime soon, and thus, decided to instead concentrate on developing Level 2 and 3 features. However, Ford also hired around 550 former Argo AI engineers following that closure, who now form the basis of a brand new autonomous tech company dubbed Latitude AI. That company’s headquarters will also be located in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania – precisely where Argo AI was based – and now, it will also apparently use Argo’s former test center in Greenville, South Carolina as well, according to Upstate Business Journal.
The highway-speed test track facility is located at the S.C. Technology and Aviation Center International Transportation Innovation Center in southern Greenville County. This is just the latest move by Ford to transition the operations of the now-defunct company into Latitude AI, which will develop new automated driving technology with an initial focus on a hands-free, eyes-off driver assist system for next-generation Blue Oval vehicles.
In addition to this test track and its Pittsburgh-based office, Latitude AI will also have engineering hubs in Dearborn, Michigan and Palo Alto, California.
Thus far, the Latitude team has applied much of their experience in automated driving, including software development tools and infrastructure, in the pivot to work on advanced driver assist systems (ADAS). These former Argo engineers already have extensive experience with things such as machine learning and robotics, cloud platforms, mapping, sensors and compute systems, test operations, systems, and safety engineering. Sammy Omari, executive director, ADAS Technologies at Ford, will also serve as the CEO of Latitude, while Peter Carr has been appointed chief technology officer and David Gollob will be the company’s president.
We’ll have more on Latitude AI soon, so be sure and subscribe to Ford Authority for ongoing Ford news coverage.
Hard to get excited about this story as the whole realignment plan is more of an accounting exercise.
The less critical of us might think of Ford as the ‘on again, off again’ player… pretty flaky stuff.
Ford’s cheerleaders were pretty mute about the whole Argo AI story and announcements.
Investor confidence likely is/will take the hit for this type of ‘corporate dithering’.