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Toyota's 'e-Palette' is a weird, self-driving, modular store-on-wheels

Toyota's 'e-Palette' is a weird, self-driving, modular store-on-wheels

"With Toyota, we are excited to be partnering with an undisputed leader in human mobility with a reputation for innovation, reliability and efficiency, as we define the pizza delivery experience of the future".

Plano-based neighbors Toyota and Pizza Hut Monday announced a "global partnership", that could see Pizza Hut pizzas delivered in autonomous vehicles designed and built by Toyota. Rinspeed's Snap vehicle, also on display at CES, is made up of two parts: interchangeable pods that attach to a rolling skateboard-like chassis, which houses data-processing computers and the EV power train. An e-Palette can bring the whole shoe collection to your customers' homes.

The electric, box-shaped vehicle will come in three sizes.

These are some of the potential uses Toyota envisions for the e-Palette.

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Toyota took advantage of CES 2018 to signal a major shift in its business, becoming what company president Akio Toyoda termed a "mobility service company" during his keynote presentation.

Amazon.com has signed on as a partner for Toyota's new mobility alliance, which will develop fully autonomous electric vehicles to deliver packages, pizza and people to desired destinations. The company launched its mobility services platform in earnest last year, however, and now it's making it clear that going forward they're going to be putting a lot of investment and focus behind taking the platform and turning into something with real commercial applicability and viability. And it might just make it to the Olympics in 2020. However, whatever the AI smarts installed for the driverless aspect, Toyota's Guardian technology would be watching over as "a safety net" to ensure it's acting as it should.

The automaker said the e-Palette will serve as the main vehicle in its e-Palette Alliance.

The big consumer electronics show kicks off on January 7 in Las Vegas. The e-Palette gets much more interesting the more you imagine how Toyota and its partners plan on filling and then re-filling this autonomous box on wheels. The program is rooted in the foundation set by the Pizza Hut BOOK IT! Most car companies with short- to medium-term plans to launch self-driving cars are targeting something other than the traditional individual ownership or lease model: cab services, for example, whether in a closed ecosystem like a retirement community or business campus, or more broadly.