The Intel subsidiary Mobileye and Zeekr, the electric car brand of the Chinese Geely Holding, want to jointly produce a fully electric car (BEV) that can drive with level 4 autonomy. The two companies recently agreed on this.
At level 4, the system permanently guides the vehicle. If there are problems, the person behind the wheel is prompted to intervene. When it hits the roads first in China and later globally in 2024, it will be the world’s first car with L4 capabilities for private consumers, it says in the announcement.
Mobileye was acquired by Intel in 2017 for $14 billion. The company produces advanced driver assistance systems (ADAS) and contributes its Mobileye Drive technology to the collaboration. This will be integrated into existing Zeekr models, it says. In this context, Mobileye wants to expand its research and development activities in China and set up a data center there.
Zeekr and Waymo
A collaboration between Zeekr and Gooogle sister Waymo is not intended for personal individual transport, but for ride hailing, i.e. commercial carpooling opportunities. Zeekr plans to develop the vehicle at its China Europe Vehicle Technology Center (CEVT) research and development facility in Gothenburg, Sweden. Waymo wants to take over the vehicles in the USA and integrate its “Waymo Driver” technology for autonomous driving into the vehicle platform there, informed Zeekr.
The new Zeekr vehicle will feature a fully configurable cabin that can be tailored with or without driver controls to meet the needs of drivers for the US-based ride-hailing fleet Waymo One. So far, Waymo One has been driving autonomous cars in Phoenix and San Francisco. Like the search engine provider, Waymo, which emerged from a Google project, belongs to the Alphabet Group and has previously cooperated with Audi, Fiat Chrysler and Jaguar Land Rover.
Zeekr was founded by Geely in early 2021 as a “global technology and mobility brand” based in Sweden. Zeekr’s first model, the 001, was launched in April 2021 and has been in production since October.