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Car and Driver: Lyft and GM to Test Autonomous Chevy Bolts on Public Roads Within 12 Months

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2017-Chevrolet-Bolt-powertrain-107-876x535
-If you use the ride-hailing app Lyft, you might soon find that the pink-mustache-wearing car that comes to pick you up is a self-driving electric Chevy Bolt—provided you’re in the yet-unnamed city where Lyft and GM plan to begin public road testing of autonomous cars.

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That’s the word from The Wall Street Journal, which reports that GM and Lyft have agreed to begin testing self-driving cars on public roads within the next year. While the location of the testing program has not yet been confirmed, Lyft insiders tell WSJ that customers will be able to opt in (or out) of the self-driving test program when hailing a ride through the app.

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And don’t worry: WSJ reports that the first batch of autonomous test cars will still have a human in the driver’s seat, to take control in case anything goes awry (and, assumedly, to satisfy the legal requirements of the jurisdiction where the test will take place).

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The self-driving test will use a fleet of Chevy Bolts, GM’s upcoming all-electric car promising 200 miles of range and a sub-$30,000 price after rebates. The Bolt is scheduled to go on sale late this year.

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It’s part of a larger push from GM to get into the self-driving trend. Earlier this year, the automaker invested in Lyft to the tune of $500 million to help “create an integrated network of on-demand autonomous vehicles in the U.S.” Separately, GM purchased aftermarket autonomous tech developer Cruise Automation for $1 billion back in March. Cruise Automation’s technology will power the self-driving Bolts used in the Lyft experiment.

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GM hopes to use its Lyft partnership to cultivate a large customer base for the Bolt among Lyft drivers, WSJ reports. Tech/automaker partnerships seem to be the theme this week: Fiat-Chrysler just agreed to supply minivans to Google for self-driving tech development.

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This story originally appeared on Road & Track.

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