Nvidia’s auto-grade chips will be used in Lucid Motors autonomous driving vehicles. Which will be using the Drive Hyperion platform. So the automaker’s current and upcoming lineup will be having Nvidia’s end-to-end Drive Hyperion platform. It is the latest of Nvidia’s drive platforms used by automakers to customize their own driving features.
And Orin is the chipmaker’s system-on-a-chip, similar to Tesla’s Full Self-Driving chip or Intel’s Mobileye EyeQ. This new hardware will form the basis for a new suite of driving features, including advanced driver-assistance systems (ADAS), automated parking, and autonomous driving, the companies said.
Lucid released its first EV, the Lucid Air, last year and is already working on a follow-up: a long-range electric SUV code-named Project Gravity. Lucid said recently it was delaying the launch of its Gravity SUV until 2024 due to supply chain disruptions and the global chip shortage. The higher trim levels of the Lucid Air, Dream Edition and Grand Touring come with the automaker’s DreamDrive Pro ADAS, which includes 14 cameras, five radars, 12 ultrasonics, and lidar sensors. It will likely serve as the basis for a conditional hands-free driving feature at some point in the future.
Lucid is the latest car company to strike a deal with Nvidia. The San Jose-based chipmaker has made serious in-roads in the auto industry in recent years, including partnerships with Jaguar-Land Rover, Volvo, Mercedes-Benz, Hyundai, TuSimple, Cruise, Zoox, and a host of Chinese EV startups.
BYD is one of those top EV makers. While they don’t get a ton of coverage outside of China where they primarily operate, they are one of the largest EV manufacturers in the world. Last year they sold 603K “new energy vehicles” in China, and about half of those were pure battery electric vehicles. BYD plans to use NVIDIA’s Hyperion platform and Orin chip starting in early 2023.
Lucid is not one of the largest EV makers – not yet, anyway. They just started delivering their Lucid Air vehicle a few months ago and are quite proud of their DreamDrive driver assistance system. But they do punch above their weight in mindshare, as the company has a lot of ex-Tesla talent (including former Model S chief Peter Rawlinson as their CEO) and has created quite a compelling luxury vehicle. While a lot of details of Lucid’s DreamDrive system were out in the public, this is the first we’ve heard that they are using NVIDIA’s platform. Every Lucid Air sedan uses an NVIDIA chip for its autonomous driving, though they have not revealed which specific chip they use. They do plan to work together on future products, but details are not available at this time.