The Top 16 Companies Paving the Way for Self-Driving Car Tech

Sunny Betz
September 17, 2020
Updated: January 4, 2021
Sunny Betz
September 17, 2020
Updated: January 4, 2021

The automobile is arguably the most important invention of the past hundred years. Though it has changed daily life more than most innovations, aside from the implementation of safety features like airbags and seatbelts, there haven’t been many radical or widespread adjustments made to the overall designs of our vehicles. However, the industry has more than made up for that lapse in just the past 20 years, introducing innovative designs such as electric engines, keyless ignition, and connected vehicle systems. 

Perhaps the most exciting new frontier in driving technology is that someday cars may not require drivers at all. Self-driving cars, once considered a science fiction daydream, are now taking the streets of San Francisco, New York, Seattle and beyond. Built with the most powerful 3D imaging and AI out there, driverless vehicle developers aim to ensure that riders enjoy a hands-free experience without compromising on personal safety. While their technologies haven’t been universally adopted yet, the industry has high ambitions. It’s been forecasted that by 2040, there will be over 33 million driverless vehicles on the road, and around 55 percent of small businesses expect that they’ll adopt self-driving car technologies in their operations within the next two decades. There is still a lot of work and testing to be done to ensure driverless technologies are one hundred percent foolproof, but given that the industry currently sits with a value of over $54 billion, you can be sure that driverless cars will be taking the roads by storm in the not too distant future. Check out these 16 self-driving car companies that are ushering in the next generation of travel.

Self Driving Car Companies to Know

  • Cruise
  • Waymo
  • Voyage
  • Swift Navigation
  • Embark Trucks
  • Zoox
  • Nauto
Cruise Self Driving Car Companies


    Founded: 2013

    What they do: Cruise's team is combining self-driving vehicle technology with ride share technology to provide riders with autonomous transportation options on demand, equipped with clean engineering to reduce fuel emissions. The company's automotive products are integrated with cutting-edge robotics and AI technologies, and are subjected to intensive simulation tests before launching to ensure that they observe road rules and safety precautions as accurately as possible.

    Home base: San Francisco


    Waymo Self Driving Car Companies


    Founded: 2009

    What they do: Waymo builds a variety of autonomous vehicles designed to meet the mobility needs of drivers across the country, offering both commuter vehicles and self-driving trucks for use in both the personal and commercial spaces. Tracing their origins to research projects conducted by Google, Waymo today delivers tested and proven self-driving technologies designed to respond quickly and efficiently to environmental factors and user input.

    Home base: San Francisco


    Voyage Self Driving Car Companies


    Founded: 2017

    What they do: Voyage aims to accelerate the autonomous vehicle market’s community impacts by building networks of driverless cars in retirement communities, helping senior citizens access better and safer transit options. The company's choice to begin implementation in retirement communities is that, because these communities usually move at a slower pace than city streets or other neighborhoods, their teams will be able to more effectively test the capabilities of their cars without putting anyone at risk.

    Home base: San Francisco



    Swift Navigation Self Driving Car Companies
    Swift Navigation


    Founded: 2012

    What they do: Swift Navigation's engineers design and build precise positioning technologies for use in autonomous vehicles and other automotive use cases. Delivering solutions to companies in transportation, agriculture, robotics and other industries, Swift Navigation aids in the development of driverless transit technology by delivering GPS positioning products that are both accurate and scalable.

    Home base: San Francisco


    Embark Trucks Self Driving Car Companies
    Embark Trucks


    Founded: 2016

    What they do: Embark Trucks has a vision for the logistics industry: dispatch fleets of driverless trucks and shipping vehicles without needing to worry about their safety on the road. The company's team maintains an equal focus on efficiency and safety, building autonomous trucks that can predict dangers on the road and protect their cargo on its way to its final destination.

    Home base: San Francisco


    CARMERA Self Driving Car Companies


    Founded: 2015

    What they do: CARMERA develops powerful HD mapping technology for use in self-driving vehicles, making it possible for automotive technologies to predict their surroundings and respond to external factors in real time. Their spatial AI technology is updated constantly to reflect up-to-date detours and road conditions, and their mapping covers a number of American cities including New York, Seattle, San Francisco, and Detroit, as well as international locations like London and Tokyo.

    Home base: San Francisco


    Zoox Self Driving Car Companies


    Founded: 2014

    What they do: Zoox is staking their claim in both the autonomous vehicle market and on-demand mobility, developing vehicles that can drive on both city streets and freeways while maintaining the safety of their passengers. Their end goal is to create a fleet of independently operating cars that can serve cities as an on-demand transportation option.

    Home base: San Francisco


    Further ReadingWhat's the Way Forward for Autonomous Driving?


    Nauto Self Driving Car Companies


    Founded: 2015

    What they do: Nauto leverages the power of AI to both develop their own driverless cars and provide other companies in the industry with the technologies to optimize their own vehicles. Among the offerings in their product suite are a fleet safety platform, driver behavior tracking alerts, built-in incident reporting, and predictive collision alerting systems.

    Home base: San Francisco


    Cloudmade Self Driving Car Companies


    Founded: 2008

    What they do: CloudMade produces both automobile personalization technology and smart AI technologies, building vehicle systems that are tailored to each driver's needs and help make the driving experience easier. Their technologies are designed to optimize driving range, cabin experiences, route guidance, communications between vehicles and environment prediction, and can also connect cars to mobile apps to manage settings from devices.

    Home base: San Francisco



    Lumotive Self Driving Car Companies


    Founded: 2018

    What they do: Lumotive's primary focus is on developing the most effective lidar system possible so that driverless vehicles can accurately predict and respond to incidents on the road without external input. Their high performance environmental scanning tech is integrated with beam steering systems so that AI perceptions can be communicated to vehicle infrastructures and adjust routes in real time.

    Home base: Seattle


    SEEVA Self Driving Car Companies


    Founded: 2016

    What they do: SEEVA's team anticipates that, while lidar and 3D sensing technology might be optimized to respond effectively to environmental changes, there are still factors like temperature changes and other obstructions that can detract from their responsiveness. Their technology is built to reduce these deterrents to lidar scanning, and are integrated with thermal adjustment and cleaning technologies to keep the line of vision clear.

    Home base: Seattle


    Reality AI Self Driving Car Companies
    Reality AI


    Founded: 2015

    What they do: Reality AI crafts cloud-based environmental detection technologies, built to be flexibly integrated into pre-existing systems and platforms. Reality AI's innovations have been recognized for awards and accolades by tech institutions like Design News, Project Kairos, and Best of Sensors.

    Home base: New York City


    DeepScale Self Driving Car Companies


    Founded: 2015

    What they do: DeepScale's aim is to integrate deep neural network technologies with self-driving technology to help autonomous vehicles perform better on the road. Their flagship product is built fundamentally on powerful AI that can anticipate, detect and respond to real-time safety threats and road conditions, enhancing the flexibility of autonomous vehicle systems and maintaining protection over their passengers.

    Home base: San Francisco


    ABB Self Driving Car Companies


    Founded: 1988

    What they do: ABB produces a variety of technologies for self-driving cars, but they also produce products for other use cases including PLC automation, analytics measurement platforms, low voltage products, power electronics and much more. ABB's many areas of expertise include industrial automation, robotics, and electrification, and their broad global footprint is maintained from offices in Argentina, Canada, Mexico, the U.K. and beyond.

    Home base: Colorado


    HAAS Alert Self Driving Car Companies
    HAAS Alert


    Founded: 2015

    What they do: HAAS Alert has a vision for self-driving technology as a means of heightening the services of emergency vehicles, providing autonomous cars and other transportation methods built to respond to external safety alerts and route the quickest paths to their destinations. Their patented Safety Cloud communicates road safety data to and from their networks, helping first responders get to the incidents on time without compromising safety.

    Home base: Chicago


    NODAR Self Driving Car Companies


    Founded: 2018

    What they do: NODAR creates 3D peripheral sensors for driverless vehicles that are built for long distance perception and are integrated with self calibrating software to help guide their vehicles to destinations in one piece. While designed primarily for automotive use, NODAR's proprietary technology can also be implemented in the logistics industry, as well as agriculture, aerospace, construction and other sectors.

    Home base: Boston


    Up NextWhat's Keeping Driverless Vehicles off the Roads?

    Images courtesy of featured companies and Shutterstock.

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