Didi Chuxing has announced that it will allow three major Chinese car manufacturers on to its platform. Soon passengers will be able to order services provided by Guangzhou Automobile Group (GAC), First Automobile Works Group (FAW), and Dongfeng Motor (DFM) on Didi’s app.
Quartz reported that this announcement comes amidst rising competition against other technology giants and as traditional car makers transition to ride-hailing services as car sales decline.
Didi told Quartz the platform would help “automotive partners build capacities for connected vehicle operations.”
While Didi is a leader in ride hailing services with about 90% of the Chinese market and 24 million ride orders daily, many users are looking for alternatives to Didi, Quartz reports. This is partially due to safety issues Didi has experienced with its ride hailing interface Hitch.
Meituan and Gaode, Didi’s direct competitors, have opened their platforms in a similar matter. Meituan users can now book services provided by car rental companies such as Shouqi Limo & Chauffer and and others. Didi plans to use electric cars and scale up to 10,000 vehicles within a year of starting operations.
According to Quartz, the move may have initial success however, it may give carmakers the ability to formulate their own ride sharing services. As they will be able to utilize Didi’s user base and drivers for their own use.
Additionally, the cost of purchasing vehicles and training drivers continues to be cumbersome for the company.