SEOUL, Aug. 12 (Korea Bizwire) — Hyundai Motor Co., South Korea’s biggest carmaker by sales, said Wednesday it has given the name Motional to its US$4 billion joint venture with Ireland-based self-driving technology startup Aptiv.
In March, Hyundai set up the 50:50 joint company with Aptiv, to be headquartered in Boston, in order to test fully autonomous vehicles for ride-hailing services later this year.
Hyundai’s decision to work with Aptiv is in line with Hyundai Motor Group’s investments in overseas startups with advanced future mobility technologies as it seeks to take the lead in next-generation vehicles.
“Motional, in all of its previous forms, has been leading driverless technology for decades. Our DNA — a combination of Aptiv’s expertise in advanced technology and Hyundai’s leadership in both vehicle manufacturing and R&D — is uniquely powerful, and positions us to fundamentally change how people move through their lives,” Motional President and CEO Karl Iagnemma said in a statement.
Motional plans to develop a self-driving vehicle platform with Level 4 to 5 autonomous technology by 2022 and supply it to global carmakers.
Hyundai said it will provide its combustion engine, all-electric and hydrogen fuel-cell electric vehicles to the joint firm for research activities and road tests.
There are five levels of driving automation defined by the Society of Automotive Engineers International.
At Level 4, a vehicle can drive itself under limited conditions and will not operate if all required conditions are not satisfied. At Level 5, a vehicle’s automated driving features can drive under any conditions.
At the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas in January last year, Hyundai Mobis introduced a Level 4 self-driving automation technology in its concept M.VISION.
It has been conducting a motorway test of Level 3 technology in its M.BILLY autonomous car since last year in South Korea, the United States and Europe.
Since Level 3 cars are only good for limited self-driving, the driver must be present to take control of the car if the need arises.