(Yicai Global) March 8 -- Chinese search engine giant Baidu has increased its investment in Shanghai-based electric vehicle startup WM Motor to deepen collaboration on autonomous vehicles.
Chinese electric vehicle startup WM Motor has completed its third round of funding, led by Baidu, raising CNY3 billion (USD446.5 million), online tech media 36Kr reported today. The target firm has so far raised about CNY23 billion.
The proceeds will be used for technological research and development as well as to improve user experience, the report added. The car firm will establish a R&D center with Apollo, Baidu's autonomous driving platform, to make level 3 and L4 smart vehicles.
Beijing's Baidu led WM Motor's Series B financing in 2017. The pair deemed to reach mass production of L3 autopilot cars by 2021, while speaking at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas in January.
Founded in 2015, WM Motor rolled out its first model, sport utility vehicle EX5, last September. It has delivered a bit more than 2,000 such cars in January.
Baidu launched its Apollo project in April of 2017, and it has partnered with almost 140 firms for it, the annual report of 2018 shows.
Editor: Emmi Laine