Mo Elshenawy Will Work As CTO and President of Cruise, a Robotaxi Unit of General Motors

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Kyle Vogt, the founder and CEO of Cruise, has resigned from his role at General Motors’s Robotaxi unit. Following his resignation, the previous EVP of Cruise, Mo Elshenawy, will act as CTO and President of Cruise.

In today’s latest BNN World News, Kyle, the departing CEO, encouraged the team at Cruise with words like the team at Cruise is brilliant, resilient, and driven, and the company has a bright future ahead. He also stated that the team is on a multi-year roadmap and executing the work as planned.

What led to Kyle’s resignation?

Cruise has reportedly called back 950 of its robotaxis voluntarily. It also suspended the operation of its vehicles on public roads after witnessing several accidents. It attracted the criticism of labor activists, first responders, and elected officials, mainly in San Francisco.

Cruise is offering self-driving cars to the public. In an incident in October, the self-driving car of Cruise drove over and dragged a woman after another human-driven vehicle hit the pedestrian and tossed her into its path.

According to a communiqué from regulators in California, the robotaxis of Cruise poses a risk to the safety of the public. So, the Motor Vehicles Department in California suspended testing permits and the deployment of autonomous vehicles by Cruise after that accident in October.

The Department of Motor Vehicles in California said the company failed to produce details about what happened when the pedestrian collided with its vehicle. In addition, Cruise is under investigation by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration to determine whether the automated systems in the vehicle exercised appropriate controls for pedestrians on the road.

General Motors acquired Cruise in 2016

In March 2016, General Motors took over Cruise, which concentrated on supplying equipment that could be fitted on normal vehicles and convert them to self-driving autonomous vehicles, for over $1 billion. In the latest USA News, Mary Barra, CEO and Chairman of General Motors, said in an email that she plans to make changes to the board of Cruise. The company also said Elshenawy will work as chief technology officer and president of the unit following the resignation of Kyle.

The Executive Vice President (Legal and Policy) of General Motors and the board member at Cruise, Craig Glidden, will continue as Cruise’s Chief Administrative Officer. The company also appointed its board member, Jon McNeill, as the VC of the Cruise Board. McNeill, who recently joined the board of Cruise, will work together with Mary Barra. The previous stints of McNeill include President of Tesla and COO at Lyft.

The changes in the board of Cruise come after a few weeks of permits being canceled by the Motor Vehicles Department for its autonomous vehicles on public roads, citing a risk to the lives of the general public. In an incident in October, its autonomous vehicle dragged the woman for 20 feet after running over her.

Cruise decided to retrench contract workers and pause operations of its autonomous vehicles in other states in the US. Around 4,000 full-time employees are on its roster, and the company expects to announce more layoffs soon.

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