SAN FRANCISCO, April 23 (Xinhua) -- Alphabet Inc.'s self-driving company Waymo said Tuesday it will build its own fleet of autonomous vehicles in Detroit.
Waymo CEO John Krafcik said his company will form partnership with American Axle & Manufacturing to lease and repurpose an existing facility on the latter's campus to produce autonomous vehicles.
Krafcik said the factory in the Motor City of Michigan state is expected to become operational by mid-2019, which will bring back jobs in the automotive industry that were recently lost.
Waymo's self-driving program will create at least 100 jobs with a potential for 400 job opportunities and 13.6 million U.S. dollars in capital investment, according to a report of Detroit Free Press.
Waymo announced in January this year that it would open the world's first factory for mass production of 100 percent Level 4 (L4) autonomous vehicles in Michigan, the heart of the American automotive industry.
By the standard of the Society of Automotive Engineers, L4 autonomous vehicles are capable of handling driving without human intervention under limited conditions and areas.
Krafcik said the Detroit facility will be the "perfect" plant to produce L4 self-driving vehicles to grow the company's autonomous driving team and business in Michigan.
"By choosing to establish its new facility in Detroit, Waymo is continuing the city's momentum and further cementing Michigan as a leader in mobility and the epicenter of advanced automotive manufacturing," said Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer.
In December 2018, Waymo launched a limited commercial taxi service in the area of Phoenix, the capital and most populous city of Arizona state.