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BMW to join Baidu’s open autonomous driving platform Apollo

ABR Staff Writer Published 12 July 2018

BMW has signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) to join Baidu’s open autonomous driving platform Apollo as a board member.

Both the firms plan to work together to bring safe and intelligent mobility experiences for Chinese consumers.

BMW is developing an autonomous driving platform with technology solutions for highly to fully automated driving, and for advanced driving assistance systems.

The company is developing the scalable autonomous driving solution with technology and OEM partners that add knowledge, resources and intellectual property assets for a concept.

Apollo, which was launched in July, 2017, offers a secure and reliable solution that supports all major features and functions of an autonomous vehicle.

The platform has brought together 118 global partners across both automotive and technology industries.

Baidu president Ya-Qin Zhang said BMW Group and Baidu have been actively exploring the intelligent vehicle sector and are well-aligned in its vision for the future of autonomous driving.

“We hope this deepened cooperation will bring Chinese consumers intelligent and comfortable product experiences. Our aim is to accelerate the development of autonomous driving technologies that align with the Chinese market,” Zhang said.

BMW member of the board of management for development Klaus Fröhlich said: “With BMW Group and Baidu joining forces we can significantly accelerate the alignment of specific requirements and technological approaches to turn the vision of autonomous driving into reality for Chinese customers very soon.”

In another development, BMW signed an agreement with Great Wall Motor to manufacture MINI electric vehicles through a new 50:50 joint venture (JV) based in China.

The German firm said the production of future battery-electric MINI vehicles in China is an important element of MINI’s continued strategic development within the BMW Group’s Strategy NUMBER ONE > NEXT.

As well as MINI electric vehicles, the JV will also manufacture electric vehicles for Great Wall Motor.


Image: Signing of a MoU in Berlin between BMW Group and Baidu. Photo: courtesy of BMW Group.