• Rimac's latest EV has no steering wheel or pedals
  • The Level 4 self-driving electric car will form the basis for a robotaxi service
  • The robotaxi service named Verne will first launch in Croatia

Rimac may be best known for its Nevera electric hypercar, but the Croatian technology company provides a wide array of products and services and intends to grow this in the near future with the launch of the Verne robotaxi service.

The service takes its name from famous French science fiction novelist Jules Verne, and will launch in 2026, Rimac announced on Wednesday.

The first location was confirmed as the Croatian capital of Zagreb, where Rimac's headquarters are located. Locations in the U.K., Germany, and parts of West Asia are planned to follow, Rimac said.

The service will initially use an electric compact hatch with sliding doors and two seats as its robotaxi. According to Rimac, roughly 90% of trips have only one or two people on board.

Verne robotaxi

Verne robotaxi

There isn't a steering wheel or pedals. Instead, the dash is fitted with a 43-inch digital screen that can display trip info or entertainment features. A touchpad between the seats can be used to interact with the vehicle. A dedicated app will also be launched alongside the service.

The self-driving technology will be sourced from Mobileye, and include lidar, radar, and camera sensors. Rimac is light on details but said the self-driving system will be ranked at Level 4 on the SAE scale of self-driving capability. That means a vehicle that can drive on its own for extended periods, though within certain conditions, the main one typically being within a geofenced area.

Volkswagen Group, a company with close links to Rimac, will also rely on Mobileye technology for a robotaxi service using self-driving Volkswagen ID.Buzz vans. VW Group is testing prototypes for a robotaxi service in Hamburg, Germany, and in Austin, Texas, and anticipates the first commercial service starting also around 2026.

Some robotaxi services are already in operation, like Waymo's Waymo One service which operates in parts of the U.S., as well as Baidu's Apollo Go service in China. Tesla also plans to get in on the action and has previously announced it will unveil a robotaxi on Aug. 8.