Volkswagen, Mobileye and Champion Motors to Invest in Israel and Deploy First Autonomous EV Ride-Hailing Service
Volkswagen Group will provide the electric vehicles (EVs) as well as its in-depth knowledge about the design and deployment of mobility services. Mobileye, an Intel Company, will provide a full turn-key hardware and software self-driving system validated for level-4, driverless capability. Champion Motors will be responsible for fleet logistics and infrastructure of the MaaS deployment and scaling.
The Volkswagen Group, Mobileye, an Intel Company, and Champion Motors announced plans to deploy Israels first self-driving ride hailing service - or Mobility-as-a-Service (MaaS) - starting next year. For this, the partners are planning to establish a joint venture. The planned cooperation is subject to approval by the responsible authorities and bodies. Operating as "New Mobility in Israel," the groups proposal was formally accepted by the Israeli government during a private ceremony today at the Smart Mobility Summit in Tel Aviv.
The Volkswagen Group will provide the electric vehicles (EVs) and bring in its in-depth knowledge and competency about design and deployment of user-centered mobility services. Mobileye will provide its level-4 AV Kit - a turn-key, driverless solution comprised of hardware, driving policy, safety software and map data. Champion Motors will run the fleet operations and control center. Together, the three companies will add the mobility platform and services, content and other MaaS tools, ensuring a seamless rider experience in the deployment of a full-stack MaaS offering.
The government of Israel has committed to support the project in three main areas: furnishing legal and regulatory support, sharing the required infrastructure and traffic data, and providing access to infrastructure as needed. While New Mobility in Israel will be Israels first commercial MaaS service with self-driving vehicles, all facilitations and rulings will be applied to all other ventures that wish to operate a MaaS in Israel.
Volkswagen, Mobileye and Champion Motors will use New Mobility in Israel to serve as a global beta site for testing the Mobility-as-a-Service model using autonomous electric vehicles. The project will start in early 2019 and scale to commercialization by 2022. New Mobility in Israel will roll out in phases and grow quickly from several dozen to hundreds of self-driving electric vehicles.
This initiative harnesses the disruptive power of several trends in the automotive industry: autonomous vehicle platforms changing the way we control vehicles, electric vehicles changing how we power vehicles, and Mobility-as-a-Service changing how we access mobility.
"We firmly believe that self-driving electric vehicles will offer Israel and cities around the world safe, clean and emission-free mobility, which is accessible and convenient. We are looking forward to this partnership with our local partners Mobileye and Champion Motors from Israel," said Dr. Herbert Diess, CEO of the Volkswagen Group.
"We are delighted to embark on a joint venture with a world-leading automotive OEM, aimed at delivering a transformational mobility service," said Professor Amnon Shashua, Mobileye CEO and senior vice president at Intel. "Our service aims to intelligently and dynamically adapt to the urban mobility needs of the 21st Century, catering to the mobility-mileage demands within the city while minimizing the direct/indirect incurred societal costs - air/noise pollution, congestion and safety."
"Champion Motors is investing in autotech and smart mobility in order to continue providing the Israeli customers with the best and most advanced products and services in this area," said Professor Itzhak Swary, chairman of the board of directors at Champion Motors. "We are proud to partner with Volkswagen and Mobileye and strengthen our collaboration through this pioneering project, which positions Israel at the spearhead of innovation."
About Volkswagen Group
Based in Wolfsburg, Germany, the Volkswagen Group is one of the world's leading carmakers and the largest car manufacturer in Europe. Twelve brands from seven European countries belong to the Group: Volkswagen Passenger Cars, Audi, SEAT, ŠKODA, Bentley, Bugatti, Lamborghini, Porsche, Ducati, Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles, Scania and MAN. The Group operates 120 production facilities in 20 European countries and in 11 countries in America, Asia and Africa. More than 610,000 employees around the globe produce almost 42,000 vehicles every working day, are involved in vehicle-related services or work in other business areas. The Volkswagen Group sells its vehicles in 153 countries. With its future program TOGETHER - Strategy 2025, the Volkswagen Group has paved the way for the biggest change process in its history: its restructuring to become one of the world's leading providers of sustainable mobility.
About Mobileye, an Intel Company
Mobileye, an Intel Company, is the global leader in the development of computer vision and machine learning, data analysis, localization and mapping for advanced driver assistance systems and autonomous driving. Our technology keeps passengers safer on the roads, reduces the risks of traffic accidents, saves lives and has the potential to revolutionize the driving experience by enabling autonomous driving. Our proprietary software algorithms and EyeQ® chips perform detailed interpretations of the visual field in order to anticipate possible collisions with other vehicles, pedestrians, cyclists, animals, debris and other obstacles. Mobileyes products are also able to detect roadway markings such as lanes, road boundaries, barriers and similar items; identify and read traffic signs, directional signs and traffic lights; create a RoadBook™ of localized drivable paths and visual landmarks using REM™; and provide mapping for autonomous driving. Our products are or will be integrated into car models from more than 25 global automakers. Our products are also available in the aftermarket.
About Champion Motors
Champion Motors, a fully owned company by Allied Group, has been successfully representing the Volkswagen Group in Israel since 1965 as the direct importer and distributor of Volkswagen, Audi, ŠKODA, SEAT and Volkswagen commercial vehicles. Champion Motors holds a key position in the Israeli market as the second-largest car importer and distributor with an active role in the automotive and smart mobility ecosystem. It provides both funding to start-ups as well as business opportunities through joint ventures with the VW Group such as ŠKODA AUTO DigiLab Israel, XPLORA by SEAT and now New Mobility in Israel.
Intel (NASDAQ: INTC), a leader in the semiconductor industry, is shaping the data-centric future with computing and communications technology that is the foundation of the worlds innovations. The companys engineering expertise is helping address the worlds greatest challenges as well as helping secure, power and connect billions of devices and the infrastructure of the smart, connected world - from the cloud to the network to the edge and everything in between. Find more information about Intel at newsroom.intel.com and intel.com.