Volvo prepares to speed up autonomous drive technology for its cars
Volvo is increasing its control in the development and marketing of autonomous driving software for highway safety. Zenuity , a joint venture between Volvo and Veoneer created to develop a platform for autonomous driving, will now be divided into two separate companies.
The aim of this operation is to improve the efficiency and potential of the project in order to bring the final product on the market faster. The technology is currently not available in any Volvo cars.
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The new company is expected to become operational latest during the third quarter of 2020.
One part is a new stand-alone company, focusing on the development and commercialisation of unsupervised autonomous drive software, and will be owned by Volvo Cars.
The second part will focus on the continued development and commercialisation of advanced driver assistance systems and will be integrated into Veoneer, the automotive safety equipment company.
Zenuity is currently a 50-50 joint venture between Volvo Cars and Veoneer. Under the joint ownership, Zenuity has developed a strong software platform for advanced driver assistance and autonomous driving systems which both parts will now continue to build upon and further develop.
As part of the agreement, Zenuity’s operations and people based in Gothenburg, Sweden and Shanghai, China will be transferred to the new company to be owned by Volvo Cars. The operations and people based in Germany and USA will be transferred to Veoneer.
Volvo Cars’ part of Zenuity will focus on development of unsupervised autonomous drive software that will be introduced in the next generation of cars based on Volvo’s SPA2 vehicle architecture. The new company will remain separate from Volvo Cars and run its own distribution channels.
“Volvo Cars is committed to introduce safe, unsupervised autonomous drive on highways with its next generation of cars," said Hakan Samuelsson, chief executive at Volvo Cars. “Allowing the new company to fully focus on this development will help us deliver on those ambitions."
“The new company will develop safe and advanced autonomous drive software," said Dennis Nobelius, Zenuity’s chief executive. “We believe that in the future there will only be a limited number of global software platforms for autonomous driving. We intend to develop one of these winning platforms."