Fiat has joined forces with BMW Group, Intel, and Mobileye to aid the supergroup in developing a world-leading autonomous driving platform.
A memorandum of understanding has been signed with the intention of Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) being the first automaker to join the trio in its quest. The aim is that the businesses will leverage each others’ strengths and resources, increase development efficiency of the platform, and reduce time to market. Fiat Chrysler will bring engineering and technical resources as well as its long-established expertise to the team, plus its reputation and significant sales volumes.
FCA’s Chief Executive Officer, Sergio Marchionne, said: "In order to advance autonomous driving technology, it is vital to form partnerships among automakers, technology providers and suppliers. Joining this cooperation will enable FCA to directly benefit from the synergies and economies of scale that are possible when companies come together with a common vision and objective."
BMW, Intel, and Mobileye came together for this project in 2016, collaborating to bring solutions for highly automated driving and fully-automated driving, aiming to make this a reality by 2021. The three have been working on a scalable infrastructure ever since that can be applied by most – if not all – automakers in the world.
A shorter-term plan was to deploy 40 autonomous test vehicles by the end of 2017, and this idea is on track to succeed.
"The two factors that remain key to the success of the cooperation are uncompromising excellence in development, and the scalability of our autonomous driving platform," said Harald Krüger, Chairman of the Board of Management of BMW AG. "With FCA as our new partner, we reinforce our path to successfully create the most relevant state-of-the-art, cross-OEM Level 3-5 solution on a global scale."
"The future of transportation relies on auto and tech industry leaders working together to develop a scalable architecture that automakers around the globe can adopt and customize," said Brian Krzanich, Intel CEO. "We're thrilled to welcome FCA's contribution, bringing us a step closer to delivering the world's safest autonomous vehicles."
"We welcome FCA's contributions and use of the cooperation's platform, which has made substantial progress over the last year and is rapidly entering the testing and execution phase," stated Professor Amnon Shashua, Chief Executive Officer and Chief Technology Officer of Mobileye, an Intel Company. "The combination of vision-intense perception and mapping, differentiated sensor fusion, and driving policy solutions offers the highest levels of safety and versatility, in a cost-efficient package that will scale across all geographies and road settings."