Ford Motor and its autonomous-driving affiliate, Argo AIA, have teamed up with Lift in an effort to launch an offer of self-driving car rides.

Ford expects to start operating self-driving cars in Miami this year through the lift’s ride-hilling sex service. Vehicles will be equipped with Argo’s self-driving technology, but there will still be someone at the steering for safety.

Brian Selsky, chief executive of Argo, wrote in a blog post about the partnership: “But going from there to offering driverless vehicles is a big step. It needs to be recognized that technology is achieving a level of self-driving performance that is considered safer than what we see on the streets today. “

All three companies hope to launch self-driving cars in Austin, Texas next year. They aim to drive a few dozen cars in Miami and Inn and hope to hit about 1,000 roads in multiple cities in five years.

Under the partnership, Lift will hold a 2.5 per cent equity stake in Argo. In return, Lift agreed to share the data collected about the ride-sharing operations operation with Ford and Argo. Ford and Volkswagen each have about 40 percent Argo.

Wimo, an autonomous-driving company owned by Alphabet, Google’s parent, has been testing a limited driverless ride-hilling sex service in Phoenix for many years. Argo is testing about 150 autonomous vehicles in six US cities as well as in Germany.

A few years ago, auto makers and technology companies expected rapid progress in turning self-driving cars. But, they have found it necessary to perfect the hardware and software needed to be more difficult than initially thought.

Two years ago, Tesla’s chief executive, Elon Musk, predicted that his company would take one million self-driving taxis on the road by 2020. That said the system will not be able to operate the car without a driver and it will never reach that capacity.