BMW i Ventures invests in data wrangler Trifacta as part of $100M round

BMW i Ventures announced an investment in Trifacta, a leader in data wrangling. The BMW i Ventures investment is part of a $100-million capital raise that includes other new investors Telstra Ventures, Energy Impact Partners, NTT DOCOMO Ventures, and ABN AMRO Digital Impact Fund. The round also includes additional investment... Read more →


New Ipsos study on autonomous driving finds most Americans simply enjoy the act of driving their vehicle

Ipsos, the global research and insights organization, explored consumer thoughts in its third annual Global Mobility Navigator Syndicated Study. The study comprises three modules, with the first focusing on Autonomous Driving. The newly released module contains results from more than 20,000 new car buyers from 10 countries. Todd Markusic, Vice... Read more →


Audi is showcasing an electric off-roader concept at IAA 2019: the Audi AI:TRAIL quattro. The AI: TRAIL joins the other three exploratory use case vehicles—the Audi Aicon, AI:ME, and AI:RACE—on Audi’s stand. The performance specifications for the Audi AI:TRAIL are markedly different from those for conventional automobiles, because the car’s... Read more →


Plus.ai, FAW Jiefang form JV to develop self-driving trucks for China; first production-class L2 semi-autonomous truck

Silicon Valley-based Plus.ai has formed a joint venture with FAW Jiefang, China’s oldest and largest truck manufacturer, to develop autonomous trucks for China. Plus.ai specializes in developing full-stack self-driving technology to enable large scale autonomous commercial fleets. The exclusive partnership is also launching its first product, the first production-class L2... Read more →


Japan and France to explore broad-ranging cooperation on future automotive industry; autonomy, batteries, fuel cells, policy

Japan and France have agreed to share information and explore deeper cooperation on the automotive industry. In a Memorandum of Cooperation, the two governments said they had “decided to establish a policy dialogue aimed at sharing information, supporting significant transformations of the environment of the automotive industry, and exchanging opinions... Read more →


MIT’s fleet of autonomous boats (earlier post) has been updated with new capabilities to “shapeshift,” by autonomously disconnecting and reassembling into a variety of configurations, to form floating structures in Amsterdam’s many canals. The autonomous boats—rectangular hulls equipped with sensors, thrusters, microcontrollers, GPS modules, cameras, and other hardware—are being developed... Read more →


Porsche has acquired a minority stake in the Israeli start-up, TriEye. The newly established company has developed a sensor technology for short-wave infrared (SWIR). It enhances safety in vehicles fitted with assistance systems or autonomous driving functions by improving the ability to see in weather conditions where visibility is poor,... Read more →


Tier IV raises $9M from Quanta Computer to develop reference model for ECUs for autonomous driving

Tier IV, Inc. has raised about $9 million from Quanta Computer, Inc. in a Series A extension round following the previous $100+ million Series A funding. This latest funding engages Quanta Computer and Tier IV to develop a new reference model of electronic control units (ECUs) for autonomous driving. The... Read more →


UPS’ venture capital arm, UPS Ventures, has made a minority investment in autonomous driving company TuSimple (earlier post). Together, both companies are testing self-driving tractor trailers on a route in Arizona to determine whether the vehicles can improve service and efficiency in the UPS network. This is an extension of... Read more →


Consumer Reports: Government documents show failures by Tesla; NHTSA must do more to hold companies accountable

Consumer Reports said that emails and other government documents released publicly for the first time show failures by Tesla regarding its safety claims and the performance of Autopilot. Consumer Reports (CR) said that the documents reveal that the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) must do more to ensure investigations... Read more →


Nissan using Renesas Electronics chips for new Skyline ProPILOT 2.0

Nissan Motor Co. has adopted Renesas’ automotive technology for the ProPILOT 2.0 system featured in the new Nissan Skyline unveiled in July. The driver assistance system combines navigated highway driving with hands-off, single-lane driving capabilities, employing Renesas’ R-Car automotive system-on-chip (SoC) and RH850 automotive control microcontroller (MCU) to implement core... Read more →


Electrify America announced an agreement with San Francisco-based electric vehicle (EV) fleet charging company Stable Auto to deploy robotic charging solutions for self-driving vehicles in a pilot demonstration site in San Francisco, as both companies develop infrastructure solutions needed to deploy self-driving and electric vehicle fleets. The two companies will... Read more →


Continental technologies such as ABS, radar and redundant brake system are being used in series production for robo-taxis for first time. This year, Continental’s technology for driverless vehicles will be in production for the first time in French company EasyMile’s EZ10 autonomous shuttle. Continental has held a stake in this... Read more →


Vision-oriented AI company Recogni raises $25M; investors include Toyota AI Ventures, BMW i Ventures, Faurecia

Recogni Inc., the designers of a vision-oriented artificial intelligence platform for autonomous vehicles, announced $25 million in Series A financing led by GreatPoint Ventures with participation from Toyota AI Ventures, BMW i Ventures, Faurecia, Fluxunit (VC arm of lighting and photonics company OSRAM), and DNS Capital. As the automotive industry... Read more →


Apple acquiring Intel’s smartphone modem business; Intel retains option for non-smartphone apps, including autonomous vehicles; 5G

Intel and Apple signed an agreement for Apple to acquire the majority of Intel’s smartphone modem business. Approximately 2,200 Intel employees will join Apple, along with intellectual property, equipment and leases. The transaction, valued at $1 billion, is expected to close in the fourth quarter of 2019, subject to regulatory... Read more →


UPS forms subsidiary and applies for FAA Part 135 certification to operate drone delivery unit

UPS has applied to the US Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) for Part 135 certification to operate commercial drone flights in the UPS network under a subsidiary business called UPS Flight Forward, Inc. FAA grants the authority to operate on-demand, unscheduled air service via the Part 135 certificate. Air carriers authorized... Read more →


Bosch and Daimler obtain approval for driverless parking without human supervision; SAE Level 4

Bosch and Daimler have now obtained approval from the relevant authorities in Baden-Württemberg for their automated parking system (earlier post) in the Mercedes-Benz Museum parking garage in Stuttgart. The automated valet parking service is accessed via a smartphone app and requires no safety driver. This makes it the world’s first... Read more →


Velodyne Lidar, Inc. has acquired mapping and localization software as well as intellectual property assets from Mapper.ai. Mapper technology will enable Velodyne to accelerate development of Vella, software that establishes its directional view Velarray lidar sensor. The Velarray is the first solid-state Velodyne lidar sensor that is embeddable and fits... Read more →


BMW Group partners with Tencent to build BMW Group China High Performance D³ platform

BMW China Automotive Trading Ltd. and Tencent signed an agreement to work together on building the BMW Group China High Performance D³ (Data-Driven Development) platform. The BMW Group will use the platform to develop automated driving technologies and products which suit the complex local traffic conditions and meet local customer... Read more →


NREL/Volvo study demonstrates approach to quantify automated vehicle fuel savings

Automated control of cars may enable drivers to achieve more fuel savings than if they were completely in charge, according to a new study conducted by the US Department of Energy’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) and Volvo Cars. The study findings are detailed in a paper in the IEEE... Read more →


The Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) and Toyota Motor Corporation (Toyota) signed a three-year joint research agreement running from fiscal year 2019 to fiscal year 2021. Over the course of the three-year joint research period, JAXA and Toyota will manufacture, test, and evaluate prototypes, with the goal of developing a... Read more →


Teijin Limited signed a joint development agreement with Australian venture AEV Robotics (AEV). Teijin and AEV will use the first two years of this initiative to develop elemental technologies for future vehicles. The agreement is to create lightweight components and solutions for next-generation transportation to realize new forms for transportations... Read more →


Groupe PSA and VINCI Autoroutes have tested new autonomous vehicle features in Saint-Arnoult-en-Yvelines (France), following on from the trial carried out in July 2017, which led to the crossing of a tollgate in full autonomous mode for the first time. (Earlier post.) The partners assessed a vehicle’s ability to drive... Read more →


Swedish EV manufacturer NEVS and the autonomous vehicle start-up AutoX have entered into an exclusive strategic partnership to integrate AutoX’s autonomous drive technology in NEVS’ next-generation vehicle architecture. The partnership is directed towards a target of deploying the first large-scale RoboTaxi pilots in Europe by the end of 2020, demonstrating... Read more →


Ford Motor Company and Volkswagen AG are expanding their global alliance to include electric vehicles—and will collaborate with Argo AI to introduce autonomous vehicle technology in the US and Europe. Volkswagen is joining Ford in investing in Argo AI, the autonomous vehicle technology platform company. (Earlier post.) In 2017, Ford... Read more →


Daimler AG and BMW Group launch long-term development cooperation for automated driving

Daimler AG and BMW Group are launching their cooperation on automated driving, announced earlier this year (earlier post): representatives from the two companies on Thursday signed an agreement for a long-term strategic cooperation, which will focus on joint development of next-generation technologies for driver assistance systems, automated driving on highways... Read more →


11 automotive and mobility companies publish framework for safe automated driving systems: SaFAD

Emphasizing safety by design, 11 automotive and automated driving technology companies have published “Safety First for Automated Driving,” (SaFAD), a non-binding organized framework for the development, testing and validation of safe automated passenger vehicles. The 11 companies—Aptiv, Audi, Baidu, BMW, Continental, Daimler, FCA US LLC, HERE, Infineon, Intel and Volkswagen—comprise... Read more →


Volkswagen Group of America announced a new name and expanded role for the former Electronics Research Laboratory (ERL), and unveiled a vehicle concept that combines Volkswagen heritage with futuristic technology. Type 20 concept vehicle. The new Innovation and Engineering Center California (IECC) will be the largest Volkswagen vehicle research facility... Read more →


Mercedes-Benz has opened new testing facility for electromagnetic compatibility (EMC) and radio-frequency (RF) antenna systems. Electromagnetic compatibility (EMC) is a key prerequisite for connectivity, autonomous driving, shared vehicles, and electric drivetrains. EMC Chamber - Capacity expansion by means of two additional EMC chambers with multi-receiver technology and the possibility to... Read more →


Hyundai Autron and Wind River to develop next-generation autonomous driving platform

Hyundai Autron, a Hyundai Motor Group company, and Wind River signed a partnership to develop an autonomous driving and connectivity software platform to power next-generation automobiles. Hyundai Autron is a research and development company specializing in electronic control software and automotive semiconductors. US-based Wind River is the global leader in... Read more →


Supplier of advanced automotive test systems AB Dynamics (ABDP) has acquired the simulation software specialist rFpro. This strengthens the company’s position in the simulation-based verification market for ADAS (Advanced Driver Assistance Systems) and autonomous vehicles. rFpro is a specialist in driving simulation for ADAS, autonomous systems and vehicle dynamics. Its... Read more →


NVIDIA to lead European working group on highly connected automated vehicles

NVIDIA will lead the European Association of Automotive Suppliers (CLEPA) working group on highly connected automated vehicles. This group, which consists of European automotive suppliers, contributes to the development of new UNECE assessment methods for automated vehicles. In addition to CLEPA, NVIDIA also works with key international organizations formulating standards... Read more →


BLS researchers suggest automation will not eliminate truck-driving jobs

While some stories in the media present automation as having the potential to eliminate large swaths of jobs in the near future, a new study by researchers Maury Gittleman and Kristen Monaco at the US Bureau of Labor Statistics argues otherwise. In the open-access study, published in ILR Review, the... Read more →


Airbus, Groupe ADP and the RATP Group, along with the Paris Ile-de-France region and the French civil aviation authority (DGAC), have launched a feasibility study to demonstrate an urban system of vertical take-off and landing (VTOL) vehicles for the 2024 Olympic Games in Paris. This collaboration, encompassing all components of... Read more →


Recently Volvo Trucks North America, along with automated vehicle software provider Perceptive Automata and customer Dependable Highway Express (DHE), showcased a collaborative innovation project designed to strengthen safety capabilities for the trucking industry through automation. This project leverages human intuition artificial intelligence that reads the intention and awareness of vulnerable... Read more →


Groupe Renault and Nissan sign exclusive alliance deal with Waymo to explore driverless mobility services in France and Japan

Groupe Renault, Nissan Motor Co., and Waymo have entered into an exclusive agreement for an initial period to explore all aspects of driverless mobility services for passengers and deliveries in France and Japan. The agreement is designed to bring together the strengths of each party and expand expertise by assessing... Read more →


Volvo Group partners with NVIDIA to develop advanced AI platform for autonomous trucks

The Volvo Group has signed an agreement with NVIDIA jointly to develop the decision0-making system of autonomous commercial vehicles and machines. Utilizing NVIDIA’s end-to-end artificial intelligence platform for training, simulation and in-vehicle computing, the resulting system is designed to safely handle fully autonomous driving on public roads and highways. The... Read more →


Volkswagen AG intends to group more than 5,000 digital experts together in its new “Car.Software” unit with Group responsibility for software in the vehicle by 2025. The company plans to develop significantly more software in the car and for vehicle-related services itself and to boost the in-house share of software... Read more →


A study by researchers at Tsinghua University in China has concluded that the overall impact of autonomous vehicle deployment on greenhouse gas emissions is not significant in the near-to mid-term. In the study, published in the journal Energy Policy, the researchers found that autonomous vehicles potentially affect the total greenhouse... Read more →


Innovusion Inc., a designer and developer of hybrid Solid State LiDAR systems for vehicle safety applications, announced the availability of its Cheetah system. Based on a rotating polygon optical architecture, Innovusion has melded together proprietary detector electronics, advanced optics and sophisticated software algorithms to offer a long-distance, high-resolution LiDAR vehicle... Read more →


NIO has updated the NIO Pilot advanced driving assistant system (ADAS), adding seven features. At the same time, the company announced the NIO OS smart operating system was upgraded to NIO OS 2.0, and unveiled a new user experience (UX) vehicle interaction and user interface (UI) design. The NIO Pilot... Read more →


Hyundai Motor Company and Kia Motors Corporation have invested in Aurora to accelerate development of autonomous vehicle technologies. The move will strengthen the strategic partnership formed between the companies in 2018, under which Hyundai, Kia, and Aurora have been collaborating on self-driving technologies on Hyundai’s flagship fuel cell vehicle NEXO.... Read more →


Volvo Cars and Uber presented a jointly developed production car capable of driving by itself, the next step in the strategic collaboration between both companies. Uber and Volvo Cars entered a joint engineering agreement in 2016 and have since developed several prototypes aimed at accelerating the companies’ self-driving car development.... Read more →


Scania, a member of the Volkswagen Group, has developed a new modular battery-electric self-driving urban concept vehicle–NXT—designed with the flexibility to shift from ferrying commuters to and from work in mornings and evenings, delivering goods during the day and collecting refuse at night. In NXT, the front and rear drive... Read more →


FCA US and Aurora to partner to develop and to deploy self-driving commercial vehicles

FCA US and Aurora signed a memorandum of understanding laying the groundwork for a partnership to develop and deploy self-driving commercial vehicles. The Aurora Driver is Aurora’s self-driving platform that comprises hardware, software, and data services. Delivering level 4 autonomy, Aurora Driver is composed of technology that is able to... Read more →


The city of Amsterdam envisions a future in which fleets of autonomous boats cruise its many canals to transport goods and people, collect trash, or self-assemble into floating stages and bridges. To further that vision, MIT researchers have given new capabilities to their fleet of robotic boats—which are being developed... Read more →


Cadillac is expanding the availability of Super Cruise to an additional 70,000 miles of compatible, divided highways in the United States and Canada. This expansion will make the true hands-free driver assistance feature available on more than 200,000 total miles of compatible highways by the fourth quarter of 2019. Super... Read more →


Wärtsilä offering first commercially available auto-docking system: SmartDock

The technology group Wärtsilä has taken a notable step towards realising the full commercial potential of autonomous vessels. Following the latest and most advanced testing of its SmartDock auto-docking system, which included giving industry representatives and customers first-hand experience as passengers onboard the test vessel, the company has secured the... Read more →


Autonomous trucking startup TuSimple using NVIDIA DRIVE

Autonomous trucking startup TuSimple has been hauling mail more than 1,000 miles between Phoenix and Dallas as part of a two-week pilot with the US Postal Service. Halfway through the test, the self-driving prototypes from TuSimple—an NVIDIA DRIVE partner and NVIDIA Inception member—have been arriving at the delivery hubs earlier... Read more →


Transit and transportation agencies form national Automated Bus Consortium; initial purchase of 75-100 automated buses

An association of transit and transportation agencies has formed the Automated Bus Consortium (Consortium), a collaboration designed to investigate the feasibility of implementing pilot automated bus projects across the United States. Created by AECOM, a fully integrated infrastructure firm, the Consortium intends to accelerate the deployment of automated transit technologies... Read more →