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Tesla layoffs, Cybertruck recalls and Serve Robotics goes public | TechCrunch

Apr 21, 2024 -
The TechCrunch Mobility newsletter discusses recent developments in the mobility sector, including Tesla's layoffs of about 10% of its 140,000-person workforce and CEO Elon Musk's focus on autonomy. The newsletter also highlights the recall of Tesla's Cybertruck, the company's 1,800-mile Tesla Semi charging corridor program, and Serve Robotics' public market debut. Other topics include Waymo's highs and lows, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration's upcoming proposal for autonomous vehicle regulations, and Serve Robotics' plans to expand its robot fleet.

In the deal of the week, Serve Robotics, backed by Nvidia and Uber, went public via a reverse merger, expecting to raise around $40 million in gross proceeds. The funds will be used for R&D, manufacturing new robots, and geographic expansion. The company aims to increase its fleet from 100 robots in Los Angeles to 2,000 robots across multiple U.S. cities by 2025. Other notable deals include Found Energy's $12 million seed round and Swtch Energy's $27.2 million Series B funding. The newsletter also covers news from Mobileye, General Motors, Gogoro, and TSMC.

Key takeaways:

  • Tesla has been in the news with layoffs affecting about 10% of its workforce, CEO Elon Musk's focus on autonomy, and a Cybertruck recall. High-profile executives Drew Baglino and Rohan Patel also left the company.
  • Serve Robotics, a sidewalk robot delivery company backed by Nvidia and Uber, made its public market debut via a reverse merger. The company plans to increase its fleet from 100 robots to 2,000 by the end of 2025.
  • Federal regulators are reportedly close to publishing a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking on autonomous vehicle regulations, which would be the first set of federal guardrails proposed for the industry. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) is expected to have a proposal out by this summer or fall.
  • Waymo has begun initial data collection and mapping in Atlanta, marking the company's latest geographic expansion. However, six Waymo vehicles were caught blocking traffic in San Francisco, highlighting some of the challenges the company faces.
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