Japan’s plan to dominate software-defined vehicles – Asia Times

Japan's plan to dominate software-defined vehicles - Asia Times

Japan’s Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry ( METI ) has issued a digital transformation ( DX ) roadmap that aims for Japanese automakers to take 30 % of the global market for self- driving software- defined vehicles ( SDVs ) by 2030.

SDVs are vehicles that have regular updates over the internet, related to computer courses and app store apps.

In METI’s assessment, 30 % of the international market had been 11- 12 million automobiles in 2030 and 17- 19 million by 2035. By contrast, Toyota, produced 10.8 million lorries in 2023. Toyota, Honda and Nissan combined produced 18.3 million.

The METI strategy covers electronic vehicle hardware, software and infrastructure, the application of relational AI for automatic driving, a worldwide appropriate data service, cybersecurity measures, scenario planning and business models for robo- taxis and self- driving trucks.

A new initiative to support the training of engineers and other key people solutions professionals is scheduled to launch later this month. By 2035, METI plans to establish a” Mobility DX Platform” with the involvement of the engine and related industries, commence- ups, universities, study institutions and educated individuals.

This will be a continuation of the 2004-established JASPAR ( Japan Automotive Software Platform and Architecture ) initiative to standardize in-vehicle electronic control systems and software.

The goal is to promote business collaboration, increase competition to find software skills, and increase the number of new projects, all with the intention of creating a” area” or eco-system for the creation and use of digital mobility technologies.

In a statement released on May 24th, METI points out that digital technology is undergoing significant changes in the value chain of the automobile market, which is currently experiencing” a global sport change.” Along with electricity, it expects DX to become a dynamic axis along which” all Japan” public- personal collaboration should get promoted.

Japanese automakers are already making this transition. On May 15, IBM and Honda announced that they had reached an agreement of understanding ( MOU) expressing their desire to work together on SDV development. In a joint statement announcing the announcement, it was stated:

The application of intelligence/A I technologies is expected to accelerate widely in 2030 and beyond, creating new opportunities for the development of SDVs. In comparison to conventional mobility products, Honda and IBM anticipate that SDVs will significantly increase the design complexity, processing performance, and corresponding power consumption of semiconductors…

In particular, the MOU outlines areas of potential joint research of specialized semiconductor technologies such as brain- inspired computing&nbsp, and chiplet”technologies with the aim to dramatically improve processing performance while, simultaneously, decreasing power consumption. To ensure high performance and quick market entry, it is crucial to co-optimize hardware and software.

IBM defines “brain-inspired computing” as” computer architecture and algorithms that mimic the brain’s structure and function while optimizing for silicon.”

Honda, which would likely struggle to do this independently, plans to increase its R&amp, D budget by 23 % this fiscal year to a record 1.2 trillion yen ($ 7.6 billion ). The expenditures will be directed toward software and electrification.

In order to prepare for the release of SDVs around the end of the decade, Honda and Nissan have also established partnerships with Nissan to jointly develop in-car software, batteries, and other electric vehicle components as well as autonomous driving.

This should help them compete with bigger players like Toyota, Volkswagen, Hyundai-Kia, and BYD, which are Chinese electric vehicle ( EV ) manufacturers.

Sony Honda Mobility intends to use the Global Communication Platform from Japanese mobile telecom provider KDDI to provide network services for its AFEELA EV, which is scheduled for sale in 2025, and other electric vehicles in the future. A 50-50 joint venture called Sony Honda Mobility was founded in September 2022.

For its part, Toyota plans to spend 1.7 trillion yen ($ 10.8 billion ) this fiscal year on AI, software, battery- powered EVs and hydrogen fuel cell vehicles. Nissan, which is restructuring to restore its competitiveness, plans to invest 2 trillion yen in vehicle electrification by the end of the decade.

At the leading edge, Turing, a Japanese start- up with the mission” We Overtake Tesla, “aims to develop a Level 5 autonomous driving system by 2030. A vehicle operating at Level 5 is completely self-driving, able to travel anywhere in any road conditions without a driver.

With support from Japanese venture capital funds and mobile telecom companies NTT DOCOMO and KDDI, Turing has a factory in Kashiwa, which is located northeast of Tokyo.

Turing was founded in 2021 by CEO Issei Yamamoto, who previously created an AI software program called” Ponanza” that plays shogi ( Japanese chess ) at a professional level.

Shunsuke Aoki, the company’s chief technology officer, holds a doctorate in electrical and computer engineering from America’s Carnegie Mellon University. In the 1980s, Carnegie Mellon began conducting research into autonomous driving.

Asserting that “turing is developing AI that” directly issues driving instructions from camera images… without using many sensors or high-precision maps, what is necessary for autonomous driving is not good eyes, but a good brain. ” According to Turing, this entails:

  • &nbsp, End- to- End ( E2E ) Autonomy: Using vast driving datasets, we develop E2E autonomous driving AI that transforms camera imagery directly into driving commands with our powerful neural networks.
  • &nbsp, Generative AI: Driving is n’t just about the rules learned in driving school. We at Turing believe that the common sense of generative AI is the key to fully autonomous driving.
  • &nbsp” ,Gaggle Cluster”: We are constructing Japan’s premier GPU cluster—powered by 96 Nvidia H100 units—dedicated to our technological advancements.

Aoki announced in April that Turing has accelerated the development of its software with the intention of having a driverless car in Tokyo by the end of this year. With plans to begin introducing SDVs in 2025, Toyota and other Japanese automakers are eager to get started.

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