Walmart to deliver groceries in self-driving cars in Austin area

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AUSTIN (KXAN) — You may start seeing more self-driving vehicles on Austin streets.

Ford Motor and Walmart announced the launch of an autonomous vehicle delivery service starting in the city later this year: Ford self-driving test cars will deliver Walmart orders. The service area will start small but stretch out over time.

It comes as Ford announced a partnership with Lyft to deploy self-driving cars — with safety drivers — on the Lyft network. That’s expected to launch in Austin next year.

Ford has been testing self-driving cars in Austin since 2019. At first, the cars were driven by people to map out Austin’s streets. That’s Level 1 autonomy.

Testing has now reached Level 4, meaning a human is not required to drive a car in a specific area of town. Drivers are still inside the car for safety reasons, however.

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