Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles moves ahead with Autonomous Driving R&D for Mobility as a Service
Mar 1, 2021
- All-electric Volkswagen ID. BUZZ is expected to be the first vehicle in the Volkswagen Group to also drive autonomously
- Carsten Intra, CEO of Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles: "Important contribution to future mobility and road safety in cities"
Hanover (Germany) – Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles, a brand within the Volkswagen Group, is consistently and rapidly advancing the development and implementation of autonomous driving. “With the confirmation of the Volkswagen Group’s Supervisory Board for our Autonomous Driving R&D program until, we are setting the course for the future of mobility. Autonomous, electric driving will make an important contribution to urban mobility and road safety. Our vehicles are the logical first choice to apply such systems to", explains Carsten Intra, CEO of Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles, after the Supervisory Board meeting of the Volkswagen Group on Friday, 26. February 2021.
The planned introduction of autonomous systems for traffic use in 2025 is currently being prepared at Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles. Christian Senger, Head of Autonomous Driving: "This year, for the first time, we are conducting field trials in Germany, in which the self-driving system by Argo AI will be used in a version of the future ID. BUZZ by Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles. The aim is to develop a ride-hailing and pooling concept similar to what MOIA offers today. In the middle of this decade, our customers will then have the opportunity to be taken to their destination in selected cities with autonomous vehicles."
As part of their cooperation, Ford Motor Company and Volkswagen have invested equally in Argo AI, a company specialized in software platforms for Autonomous Driving. The goal: the consistent and fast development and use of autonomous systems. In addition to the initial investment of one billion US-Dollars, the Volkswagen Group also contributed its subsidiary AID (Autonomous Intelligent Driving) into Argo AI. With the autonomous driving budget recently confirmed by the Supervisory Board of the Volkswagen Group, Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles is taking the next significant step towards the future of autonomous mobility.
The commercial vehicle brand is responsible for the development of fully autonomous systems and their commercial use in urban areas. The brand plans to develop and build Special Purpose Vehicles (SPV), such as robo-taxis and vans.
In addition to the investments in Argo AI, the Volkswagen Group is also investing billions of euros in projects of its own software company, the Car.Software Organisation. The Car.Software Organisation develops, in parallel and independently of Argo AI, assisted and automated driving functions up to level 4 for the private mobility sector of all Volkswagen Group brands.
Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles plans to develop the vehicles in which Argo's so-called self-driving system (SDS) will be used. They are based on the all-electric ID. BUZZ, which is expected to have its world premiere next year. The developments are already running at full speed, to not only electrify the iconic Bulli, but to also transform it into a groundbreaking autonomous vehicle with SDS.
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