Uber, the controversial company that provides people with the ability to get a ride without using a taxi, apparently has a huge crush on Tesla, another controversial company that’s shaking the boat by only making electric vehicles.
CEO of Uber Travis Kalanick is enamored with Tesla not because its vehicles run only using electricity or that they look great. No, Forbes is reporting that Kalanick loves that Tesla is going to launch fully autonomous vehicles in the near future.
Based on that fact alone, the Uber CEO says that he would be interested in buying every single autonomous model Tesla makes. Yes, each and every one. That’s projected to be about half a million vehicles by 2020.
Think about it for a second: with autonomous vehicles, people could order a ride from Uber and be transported around solo in the vehicle.
Before taking this news too seriously, Forbes got the information from a Tesla investor and not Kalanick directly. Could this just be another case of the electric automaker’s fans getting carried away? After all, they have a regular habit of talking big and making some incredulous claims. Or is Kalanick getting ready to revolutionize transportation even more?
The big question here is why Kalanick wants to only buy a bunch of Teslas? Others are working on viable autonomous tech, such as Google and Nissan, so why the extreme love for Tesla? There’s no knowing if Tesla will meet its production goals by 2020, or just how the technology would work using a service like Uber.
The new plan would step on a few toes, like those people who have made the career move to drive for Uber full-time. Just how extensive the autonomous drive vehicles would be in Uber’s business plan remains to be seen, but there’s always that chance that it would completely supplant human drivers.
There are those who actually enjoy the fringe benefits of dealing with Uber drivers, such as making small talk.