Cruise Origin driverless shuttle

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Cruise, General Motors’ majority owned self-driving vehicle unit, said Thursday in an email to staff that it will be cutting about 8% of its workforce amid the coronavirus pandemic.

The cuts are expected to primarily come from outside the company’s engineering operations, including recruiting and human resources, according to a person familiar with the plans.

The layoffs aren’t related to the Covid-19 crisis, according to the person, who agreed to speak anonymously because the plans aren’t public. The company is rebalancing its operations, they said.

“In this time of great change, we’re fortunate to have a crystal clear mission and billions in the bank. The actions we took today reflect us doubling down on our engineering work and engineering talent,” Cruise spokesman Ray Wert said in an emailed statement.

The company has about 1,800 employees, primarily based in San Francisco.

The cuts, which Bloomberg News reported earlier, come amid tough times for auto companies as the coronavirus pandemic halts production and devastates global vehicle sales. 

GM, as it attempts to save cash, last month confirmed plans to shut down its Maven car-sharing brand, a once emerging mobility business for the automaker.

GM’s crosstown rival, Ford Motor, last month said it would postpone plans to launch ts autonomous vehicle commercial services from next year to 2022 due to the coronavirus pandemic.

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