Automakers go west in search of tech and talent

As in-vehicle technologies evolve, and autonomous cars come closer to reality, the automotive industry is setting up shop where the developers are: in Silicon Valley.

Become An Insider

Sign up now and get FREE access to hundreds of Insider articles, guides, reviews, interviews, blogs, and other premium content. Learn more.

Here's how you can tell there's a seismic shift underway in the auto industry: A slew of automakers have set up R&D centers in Silicon Valley, hoping to be closer to the developers and the technologies they need to remain competitive.

In the past five years, BMW, Honda, Hyundai, Mercedes-Benz, Renault-Nissan and Toyota have all opened research-and-development facilities in the San Francisco Bay Area. Last year, Ford followed suit, as did General Motors, which opened an "Advanced Technology Silicon Valley Office" in Palo Alto to develop a Web browser for Cadillac's CUE in-vehicle infotainment (IVI) system.

Those moves come as Apple and Android fight for a presence on many new cars' navigation screens -- both Ford and Fiat Chrysler announced at CES 2016 that Apple's CarPlay and Google's Android Auto would be coming soon to their vehicles.

To continue reading this article register now

Join the discussion
Be the first to comment on this article. Our Commenting Policies