Nissan Motors logo is displayed at its headquarters in Yokohama, south of Tokyo on May 10, 2013.
TOKYO - Nissan said on Tuesday it would begin field tests for driverless "robot taxis" early next year as its rivals around the world step up self-driving technologies.
The car giant and Japanese mobile game company DeNA have jointly developed the new driverless vehicle service, dubbed Easy Ride.
They plan to carry out the test with public participation for two weeks in March in Yokohama, southwest of Tokyo, using two electric autonomous vehicles based on its Leaf, a Nissan spokesman said.
The aim was roll out the service by 2020.
Under their plan, customers can use a mobile app to call the robo-vehicle, set the required destination and pay the fare.
They also plan to support multiple languages and use a remote monitoring system to ensure passenger safety.
The number of foreign visitors to Japan has hit record highs ahead of the 2020 Olympics in Tokyo.
Major carmakers have promised to have self-driving models rolling off assembly lines as early as 2020.