Honda's 2030 Vision: forming partnerships to explore AI and other new fields
Level 4 automated driving technologies to be established by 2025
|New Civic sedan to be launched in Japan in late July 2017 (Photo: Honda)|
Honda's 2030 Vision, which was released on June 8, 2017, illustrates its target for 2030 to "lead the advancement of mobility and enable people everywhere in the world to improve their daily lives." Toward this end, the automaker will focus on three business viewpoints: "inter-regional coordination and collaboration", "collaboration for open innovation with third parties", and "strengthening the foundations of existing businesses."
"Collaboration for open innovation" calls for Honda to form partnerships with other companies and organizations to transform existing businesses and enter new fields. Honda has established new in-house R&D units that lead activities in new areas such as robotics and artificial intelligence (AI) technologies. These new units serve as contacts for external partners. Honda is also cooperating with other companies in a wide range of business fields. The automaker is working with Waymo for development of automated driving technologies and Hitachi Automotive Systems for development, production, and sale of motors for electrified vehicles.
For "inter-regional coordination and collaboration", Honda will refine global models including the Civic, CR-V, and Accord to be strong sellers in any region. At the same time, Honda will develop regional models more efficiently. Multiple regions with similar customer needs will work together to develop and share competitive models.
Prior to announcement of its 2030 Vision, Honda revealed its plans for electrification and introduction of advanced safety technologies to realize a carbon- and collision-free society. According to its plans for electrification, Honda will initially focus on plug-in hybrid vehicles (PHVs), while at the same time also enhancing development of fuel cell vehicles (FCVs) and electric vehicles (EVs). A China-exclusive EV model is scheduled to go on sale in 2018. The company is aiming for two-thirds of its global units sales to be electrified vehicles in 2030.
As for the introduction of advanced safety technologies, the automaker will increase the number of vehicles that feature the Honda Sensing suite of safety and driver-assistive technologies, including a collision mitigation braking system. In Japan, all new models including mini vehicles will be equipped with Honda Sensing as a standard feature starting with the all-new N-BOX that will be fully redesigned in the fall of 2017. This safety package will increasingly be made available for new models in North America, China, and Europe as well. Regarding introduction of automated driving, Honda plans to realize these technologies for multiple lanes on highways by 2020, and to establish "level 4" (in which the system conducts all driving tasks and does not require the driver to intervene under certain roadway and environment conditions) automated driving technologies by 2025.
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