Early a year ago, it announced its first strategic partnership with Volkswagen Group to bring self-driving cars to market.
Aurora was founded in 2016 by three partners - Chris Urmson, Sterling Anderson and Drew Bagnell.
In California, which has become the global center of autonomous-vehicle research, at least 62 companies have permits to test cars from the state Department of Motor Vehicles.
Aurora Innovation is developing a full self-driving program from soup to nuts, including hardware, software and data-collection and -distribution tech.
Those self-driving frontrunners are making their own moves. Aurora raised $90 million in a funding round past year. Zoox raised $500 million last summer and recently announced former Intel Corp. executive Aicha Evans as its new CEO. As described by the Aurora team in a blog piece published on Medium, "Moreover, all Aurora-powered vehicles carry a common set of self-driving hardware and run the same self-driving software, allowing Aurora and its partners to benefit from the collective scale of all participants...learn [ing] from the combined experience of all vehicles on the platform". Even Waymo's robotaxi service in Arizona still has trained backup drivers inside. The case eventually settled and Aurora paid Tesla $100,000.
SAN FRANCISCO: A self-driving vehicle technology startup founded by former Google, Tesla and Uber executives said Thursday it secured $530 million in new funding that included a "significant" investment from Amazon. After dipping its toe in the robotic vehicle arena with Scout, an autonomous delivery robot, and collaboration with Embark, a self-driving truck startup, Amazon definitely seems interested in where the field is headed.
Amazon did not reveal how much it had invested but said it could use driverless vehicle systems in package delivery or in its warehouses.
For Aurora's Urmson, who has been working on the technology for more than a decade, this isn't a race: "We're clear with our investors that this is a long road", he said, "and at the end of that road is incredible impact on improving safety and mobility".