DETROIT — General Motors and San Francisco-based ride-hailing company Lyft are forming a partnership they say could help them beat their rivals to the self-driving future.
Lyft said Monday that GM invested $500 million in the company as part of a $1 billion round of fundraising.
GM gets a seat on Lyft's board and access to the 3-year-old company's software, which matches riders with drivers and automates payments. It also becomes a preferred vehicle provider, with the chance to get many more people behind the wheel of a Chevrolet, Buick, GMC or Cadillac.
Lyft gets the expertise of a 108-year-old automaker with decades of experience in making connected and autonomous vehicles. Detroit-based GM also has an enviable global reach; it sells almost 10 million cars each year in more than 100 countries. Lyft operates in 190 U.S. cities, although it recently formed partnerships with ride-sharing services in China and India.
Together, the companies plan to open a network of U.S. hubs where Lyft drivers can rent GM vehicles. That could expand Lyft's business by giving people who don't own cars a way to drive and earn money through Lyft. It will also give GM a leg up on competitors like Daimler AG and Ford Motor Co., which are developing their own ride-sharing services.