Nissan has opened a new advanced research center – Nissan Research Center Silicon Valley (NRC-SV) – in Sunnyvale, California, that will specialize in self-driving and internet-connected auto technology, reported Bloomberg.
Nissan is also looking at car connectivity and driving behavior at its new lab. The company, already a trend setter in electric car development, plans to use electric research vehicles at its Silicon Valley center.
The opening of NRC-SV is part of Nissan’s global strategy to expand and localize its R&D function in strategic markets. The new Silicon Valley research center will take responsibility for selected roles in collaboration with Nissan Research Center in Japan.
Nissan chose Dr. Maarten Sierhuis as research director to lead the NRC-SV. Sierhuis, a recognized expert in the field of artificial intelligence, will lead the new center’s efforts in the areas of autonomous driving and connected-vehicle systems.
Nissan’s Sunnyvale center plans to tap into the resources of Stanford University’s automotive labs as well as the University of California’s Berkeley and Davis campuses, and Silicon Valley companies.
Other automakers have already set up labs in the Valley: Toyota and Volkswagen both work on infotainment systems in the region, and Google’s self-driving car initiative is minutes away in Mountain View.
“As we continue to expand our R&D capabilities throughout the world, we aggressively pursue our activities to create new values of mobility, by harnessing the latest information and communication technologies here in our new research center in Silicon Valley,” said Nissan Executive Vice President supervising Research and Development Mitsuhiko Yamashita.
According to Carla Bailo, the company expects work from the new research center to show up in products within ten years.