A flurry of deals between big automakers and ride hailing and transportation startups is rewriting the playbook in the contest to control the future of personal transportation.
Automakers now recognize they may turn ride-hailing services and car sharing companies into steady customers for all sorts of vehicles, particularly hybrid and electric cars, industry executives and analysts say.
Tie-ups with carpooling services or short-term rental companies help automakers expose consumers to brands they might otherwise ignore. Technology companies offer access to troves of consumer data, and sophisticated ways to analyze them.
From the automakers, the Silicon Valley mobility companies obtain fresh capital, access to auto industry engineers who know how cars work and discounts on vehicles for their drivers.
In the latest tie-up between an automaker and a transportation technology startup, German luxury car maker BMW said on Wednesday its BMW iVentures venture capital arm has invested an undisclosed amount in California-based Scoop Technologies, which offers a smartphone-powered carpooling service called Scoop.
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