1. Introducing the smashing new Team FIAT T-Shirt !! To order yours click here : Team FIAT T-Shirt

FCA's Autonomous Driving/Self-Driving Car tech tie-up with GOOGLE

Discussion in 'Fiat Global News' started by prabhjot, May 2, 2016.

  1. prabhjot

    prabhjot Esperto

    Messages:
    2,881
    delhi ncr
    http://europe.autonews.com/article/...le-owner-alphabet-near-self-driving-cars-deal

    http://www.automobilemag.com/news/fca-ceo-tieup-google-apple-makes-sense/

    Marchionne, at the fca press conference at the recent Detroit Auto Show laughingly dismissed the idea of spending billions on developing new self-driving, fullly-autonomous technology, like all the other biggest car companies are doing (the Germans, including VW group, in a combined way.)

    His logic is simple and impeccable. He says this tech will need standards (for inter-operability with other cars, + the internet of things, in this case the sensors on roads, traffic junctions, bridges, the traffic police, etc) and once it's established in the marketplace it will become fully 'commoditized'.

    i.e., the supplier firms will provide the tech, as is already the case with say transmissions (e.g., ZF or Aisin)

    He feels it is downright financially irresponsible of car firms (that already earn some of the lowest returns on capital invested of ANY industry, mature or new) to waste money independently and competitively developing such tech, since this stuff is a mere 'commodity' input that will NOT add to the usp of their cars or brands.

    Hence: he been saying he's happy to do a 'deal' with the Silicon Valley firm(s) that have stolen a march on the car companies.

    Namely, in this case: GOOGLE, the firm that's far ahead of any other at developing, testing and honing this tech. Google/Alphabet of course wants to do an android here: offer the tech to any and everyone, achieve a defacto or dejure 'standard' status or at least a ubiquity, from which it'll make money by......getting access to car users' private mobility information/data etc.

    This IS the very reason the biggest firms have been avoiding Google, the unequivocal leader at this tech: they don't want to lose rights-to that data, and feel that they have the scale to try to set-standards on their own.

    FCA is large enough (3/4th largest in the usa as well as europe) to enable Google to come close-enough to an Android-like ubiquity/standard-setting-reach/influence but not so-large as to be unwilling to 'deal' with a non-traditional/disruptive-auto-company lile Google on the issue of data-ownership.

    Marchionne's whole approach with all of fca's brands and models is to ONLY, to the extent the marketplace allows, offer/develop high-usp, differentiated, 'authentic' and non-commoditised models.

    By definition FCA, then, is not interested in trying to compete on ubiquitous, un-differentiated, standards-based tech like autonomous driving (which will be dictated to a large degree by government regulations and insurance companies etc.)

    Or able to spare the cash: it is already well-into (4/5 new Fiats already this year, a new maserati, a new Alfa+new chrysler +new Jeep+new plants in China, all in 2016 etc)....a 50billion$ new-model etc investment cycle through to 2018-2020, is relaunching no-less than the whole Alfa romeo brand globally, is fast-expanding Jeep global manufacture and new-models, replacing the entire Fiat Brazil lineup, adding further to the Fiat Europe lineup, replacing all the old pre-merger leftover models in the usa market, new Maserati-s etc etc.
  2. prabhjot

    prabhjot Esperto

    Messages:
    2,881
    delhi ncr
    http://www.autonews.com/article/201...driving-prototypes-based-on-chrysler-pacifica

    The 'deal' has been announced by both Google and FCA!

    This deal, all else being equal, puts FCA far ahead of ALL other car companies, including the German firms and Toyota+GM+Ford, when it comes to actually deploying and integrating fully-autonomous, self-drivingtech into its models in the usa and in europe.

    In the process it ends up saving FCA billions of $ in redundant r&d spending, which is any case is not in conformity with marchionne+elkann's focus on engineering and brand-identity/history/authenticity based cars that embody what carfirms do best: engineering and design+branding, as opposed to what they have no 'comparative advantage' in: IT-consumer-technology.

    Meanwhile Google, in alliance with other firms including Uber and ford, has setup a 'coalition' to lobby the usa govt+regulators+the public for hospitable laws that are to govern self-driving car technology deployment, tech and inter-operability standards, insurance/liability rules, etc.
    sriramr9 and asimpleson like this.
  3. prabhjot

    prabhjot Esperto

    Messages:
    2,881
    delhi ncr
  4. prabhjot

    prabhjot Esperto

    Messages:
    2,881
    delhi ncr
    https://www.bloomberg.com/technology

    https://www.bloomberg.com/news/arti...es-new-self-driving-car-business-called-waymo

    Google is spinning off its self-driving car project into a seperate ride-sharing/hailing firm named WayMo, in cooperation with FCA, who's something of a partner for it on this project, based initially on Google-self-driving-sensors and algorithms-laden Chrysler Pacifica minivans (including phev and pure ev.)

    WayMo would be going up against no less than UBER, and given Google's epic resources it will find itself able to compete really well against the likes of UBER, only more so since its vehicles (i.e., Chrysler Pacifica-s, at first) will be highly semi-autonomous, i.e., will likely have far lower costs for the 'driver'.
    amitshedha likes this.
  5. prabhjot

    prabhjot Esperto

    Messages:
    2,881
    delhi ncr
    http://www.autocar.co.uk/car-news/i...les-provides-google-brand-100-driverless-cars

    Marchionne is on record as being completely against autofirms trying to create each-theri-own proprietary autonomous driving tech and IP in a vain effort to compete with the likes of Google, Apple, Amazon and Uber. The first 3 firms can, he says, buy any auto company in the world in entirety with their spare change. i.e., the financial arms race is absurd as something autofirms should get into.

    Instead Marchionne's approach is to cooperate and facilitate those very 'silicon valley' firms (to which must be added Chinese ones and some supplier firms.

    With car firms' brands being focussed ONLY on cars (handling, design, powertrains, ride, safety, quality, character etc) since that and that alone provides the comparative advantage of the car company relative to the silicon-tech ones. In any case, M has said that autonomous driving tech depends entirely (eventually) on STANDARDS (v-to-v, v-to-i, insurance and police regulations etc) that by definition will never get to be defined by any individual firm/brand, and that by definition will be fully 'commoditised', will by definition not add to the usp of one car firm or brand or model-range over another. What sense then is there in investing billions on such a lousy financial non-payoff bet.

    Expect the Gogle-FCA partnership to extend a good deal further. Expect further such partnerships (e.g., Maserati and Alfa adopting Android N as the OS for all vehicle electronics and all interfaces, not just the ice touchscreen, or a similar deal with either Amazon for autonomous electric delivery vans or UBER and/or Apple.) Likewise Magneti Marelli will inevitably be combined with say an LG or a Samsung: soon enough?
    Last edited: Dec 20, 2016
    amitshedha likes this.
  6. prabhjot

    prabhjot Esperto

    Messages:
    2,881
    delhi ncr
    http://www.prnewswire.com/news-rele...tem-concept-powered-by-android-300384373.html

    The next generation UConnect system, widely regarded as the best UI infotainment etc system in the usa car industry (at least among non-luxury brands), will retain its famous functionality and high-facility-of-use BUT will be based on the latest Android open source OS, instead of Blackberry's qnx as it is currently.

    FCA is clearly moving towards, for some brands and models, a comprehensive vehicle-software partnership with Google, including going well beyond the latest Android automotive OS: extending to vehicle diagnostics, MID, assorted plug-ins and apps, and esp all-new 'connected car' and Internet-of-Things type software modules that can be plugged into a flexible, modular and upgradable Android automotive OS.

    Maserati was the primary testing partner for the development of this for Google and FCA. Next-gen Maserati-s will see their deployment first, and then it will trickle down.

    This accords with Marchionne's capital-conservative approach: stick to what you have a comparative advantage in as a car maker and as car brands, leave the IT-centric stuff to the deep deep pocketed ustaads, namely Google (or Apple, etc.) As long as FCA controls the UI and its functionality/ease-of-use-design, the 'integration': the OS or the hardware backbones should simply be outsourced, preferably to an open-source and 'platform' style large expert-firm like Google.

    Clearly, it appears that FCA has, for the future, allied itself in this regard to Google as opposed to Apple which is also trying to breakthrough in the automotive IT full-OS and apps domain.

    Meanwhile, Magneti Marelli is very strong at telematics design and manufacturing: this is very much like the relationship Google has with say a Samsung, software mostly done by one, the hardware, design and testing/integration+manufacturing etc done by the other. Win-win. Of course, MM's telematics special-competence (they supply BMW with its IDrive systems) had made it a jv or acquisition target of Samsung, and now (it's rumoured in the Korean press) with LG, instead. Marchionne's valuation of at least 3 billion$ for all of MM was deemed too expensive by Samsung, which also has its own crises at the moment, and has purchased Harmon instead. LG is ahead of Samsung in the automotive space, esp ev-related stuff, so here again we're likely to see Marchionne's different-to-all-other-car-firms approach yield win-win, capital-conserving and profitability-boosting rewards for FCA.
  7. prabhjot

    prabhjot Esperto

    Messages:
    2,881
    delhi ncr
    http://europe.autonews.com/article/...-begin-testing-autonomous-cars-with-consumers

    in alliance with FCA, via the waymo Chrysler Pacifica minivan.

    FCA has dispensed with any need to do their own proprietary autonomous driving algorithm and data-mining etc, by tying up with Google which is still far ahead of everyone else in terms of real-world testing etc.

    Accordingly, GOOGLE will have disproportionate influence on the REAL determonents of success with autonomous driving tech: the standards that are set and enforced by governments and regulators, so.

    FCA will it seems introduce GOOGLE autonomous driving suites into their commercial and pv offerings at a later stage: across brands, in both europe and the usa.

    meanwhile, Magneti Marelli (via a new strategic JV with Samsung) will aim to become a major developer of and maker of sensor, hardware, v-to-v and v-to-infrastructure etc technology including software, telematics, security etc.
  8. prabhjot

    prabhjot Esperto

    Messages:
    2,881
    delhi ncr
    https://www.reuters.com/article/us-fiat-chrysler-autonomous-idUSKCN1AW0MB

    In pursuance of Marchionne's oft-stated policy of not wasting the firm's capital developing it own and proprietary (ev and) autonomous-driving technology, since it is a technology that is just waiting for extreme commoditization and is in any case too risky to invest much in alone since everything depends on government and insurance company etc new and very uncertain regulations, laws etc:

    FCA has, alongside the WAYMO/Google partnership also now joined the BMW-Intel-MobilEye consortium. It is said that Honda is another firm adopting the same approach, and likely to just like FCA join Waymo as well as this BMW-Intel consortium for a common, shared, scalable, open, autonomous driving 'platform'.
    Last edited: Aug 16, 2017

Share This Page