Continental, EasyMile launch new autonomous driving R&D team in Singapore
Continental and EasyMile have agreed to inaugurate a new autonomous driving R&D team in Singapore. The joint R&D team will begin work on solutions for driverless mobility at the Singapore corporate building.
The new joint team’s work focus will be to develop new technology centered on perception and deep learning.
“Our Singapore location is one of our largest R&D locations in Asia already. Its position is strategic, as Singapore is one of Asia’s four tigers, and an important financial and trade center,” said Ralph Lauxmann, head of Systems & Technology, member of the Chassis & Safety management board, and head of the Automated Driving project house at Continental. “With the joint autonomous driving R&D team, we have expanded the network of our Automated Driving project house by another important location. Together with EasyMile we are proud to prepare a contribution to the Singapore Smart City Initiative. It is a privilege for our AV team to be part of this journey into the future. The results can be used as a blueprint for the deployment of driverless systems also in other regions of the world.”
Gilbert Gagnaire, CEO of EasyMile SAS, confirmed during the inauguration, “I am delighted to further extend the already deep collaboration between Continental and EasyMile. For the past four years, EasyMile has demonstrated its leadership in deploying reliable and safe autonomous systems. Continental and EasyMile joint R&D team in Singapore is an important step to accelerate the development of new technology for global markets as well as to benefit of the advance and dynamism of Singapore’s autonomous driving ecosystem to further test our products.”
The MoU between Continental and EasyMile is also a stepping stone in a structured approach to AV testing on public roads in Singapore. The city already has a test center for AVs located in Jurong Innovation District, and there are ongoing AV trials being conducted at one-north and Sentosa. Singapore has also identified three towns for pilot deployment of AVs for public transport by the early 2020s. The pilot deployment is expected to provide insights on development of AVs at town scale to benefit commuters, especially in enhancing first- and last-mile connectivity.
Continental’s Singapore location currently has more than 1300 staff, and the recently expanded building will gain further importance within the company’s network of global R&D. The first presentation and test operation of the Continental Urban Mobility Experience development platform at the Continental Frankfurt location was in 2017. Further testing followed at the Continental Auburn Hills location in the U.S. (MI). To further expand Continental’s global expertise in driverless vehicles, another vehicle was brought to Japan to determine specific Japanese requirements for local development of driverless mobility systems.