Volkswagen founds AI lab, in talks with potential partners By Reuters



© Reuters. A Volkswagen logo is pictured at Volkswagen’s headquarters in Wolfsburg, Germany, April 22, 2016. REUTERS/Hannibal Hanschke/File Photo

BERLIN (Reuters) – Volkswagen (ETR:) is in talks with international technology firms about collaborating to create new digital prototypes for products and features using artificial intelligence, the carmaker said on Wednesday.

The company has founded a new ‘artificial intelligence lab’ to generate new product ideas, including possible cooperations with companies in the technology sector across China, North America and Europe, it said in a statement.

The aim is to generate early-stage prototypes in areas like AI-optimised charging cycles, predictive maintenance services and voice recognition.

“Exploratory talks are already underway with international tech companies on initial projects,” it added, without providing further details.

The lab will not be housed inside Volkswagen’s software unit Cariad or a specific brand, with the view of moving faster than other processes within the company would, a spokesperson said.

Still, promising prototypes will be passed onto brands to proof and execute, and the supervisory board of the lab will include representatives from Volkswagen, Audi and Porsche.

Cariad, which has struggled with years of delays and overhauls, is currently developing a restructuring plan which reports say could involve cutting thousands of positions as the unit attempts to bring new software architectures onto the market.



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