Chinese ride-hailing behemoth Didi Chuxing announced today that it has launched a car-sharing platform alongside 12 auto giants including Geely Auto and Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi.
Didi said it intends to utilise its artificial intelligence strengths and national network to help the "entire automotive industry chain".
The company, which bought out Uber's China business in 2016, said it plans to create an "open new energy car-sharing system" allowing members to use vehicles on demand through an app-based system.
Other members involved in the tie-up include Chery Automobile Group, Dongfeng Passenger Vehicle, First Auto Works, Hawtai Motor, Kia Motors and Zotye Auto.
The Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi alliance said last month it planned to plug as much as $1bn into startups over the next five years, looking to drive up its participation with new mobility technologies.
Renault and Nissan take 40 per cent stakes in the fund, while Mitsubishi Motors will take the remaining 20 per cent. Its first deal involved US battery technology company Ionic Materials.
Today, Ogi Redzic, senior vice president of connected vehicles and mobility services for Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi, said: “The potential business and technology opportunities that we will explore with Didi are quite promising. This cooperation fits with the Alliance expansion in vehicle electrification, autonomy, connectivity and new mobility services.”
Chen Ting, general manager for the express mobility group of Didi Chuxing, said:
Strategic partnerships with the world’s leading industry players like Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi will enable us to pool our strengths and resources to meet diversified mobility demands and create an open, sharing-based transportation ecosystem, as we innovate vehicles for a future of ridesharing, AI technology and new energy.
As well as working with automakers, Didi will also work alongside other car-sharing services, rental firms, and infrastructure operators.