Volkswagen Group's software unit Cariad and German supplier Robert Bosch have entered a partnership to develop advanced driver-assistance and autonomous-driving systems for consumer vehicles, the companies said Tuesday.
Cariad and Bosch are looking to develop Level 2 systems for both urban and freeway driving to be installed on VW Group vehicles starting in 2023, the companies said in a statement on Tuesday. They will also develop Level 3 functionalities for hands-free highway driving.
SAE International defines Level 2 systems as those that provide steering and brake/acceleration support to the driver, while Level 3 systems are those that provide automated driving in certain conditions while a driver is present.
The partnership comes as VW looks to catch up to competitors in the increasingly competitive automotive software space. In December, Mercedes-Benz got regulatory backing to deploy hands-free driving in Germany with a system approved for Level 3 automated driving -- a notch higher than Tesla’s Level 2 Autopilot system.
Last year, VW rolled its software operations into the Cariad brand, pledged to spend billions of dollars on digitalization and said it will seek new partners in the space.
"Automated driving is key to the future of our industry," Cariad CEO Dirk Hilgenberg said in a statement. "This underscores our ambition to deliver the best possible solutions to our customers as soon as possible."