Hyundai Invests $5 Million in SE Michigan mobility center
Andy Freels (left), president of the Hyundai America Technical Center and John Maddox (right), president and CEO of the American Center for Mobility, signed a long-term partnership agreement this week to support the advancement of connected and automated vehicle technology.
By Vince Bodiford
Hyundai joins AT&T, Toyota, and Ford, in support of ACM.
The Hyundai America Technical Center, Inc. (HATCI) is entering into a long-term partnership with the American Center for Mobility (ACM) to support the advancement of connected and automated vehicle (CAV) technology. As one of ACM’s Founder-level sponsors, HATCI will contribute $5 million to support the creation of a collaborative test environment in Southeast Michigan.
Located at the historic Willow Run site in Ypsilanti Township, ACM is creating a world-class proving ground where companies will collaborate to develop CAV and future mobility technologies, as well as work on standards and education programs.
“Hyundai’s investment supporting ACM strengthens our long-term commitment to the advancement of safety and mobility through automated vehicle technology. Working together with industry, academia and government provides a collaborative environment to support new and innovative mobility solutions,” said Andy Freels, president, HATCI. “We are excited to be a founding member of the government-industry team at the neighboring ACM facility. As a founding member, we will help set the direction for CAV standards and test advanced technologies in a safe environment for the North American customer.”
The creation of the unique testing environment, located in close proximity to HATCI’s engineering headquarters, will enhance HATCI’s development and validation of advanced driver-assistance systems and CAV technologies. The ACM facility will provide testing under unique and extreme conditions in a repeatable and controlled environment to improve the safety of these systems for the customer. This collaboration will advance safety, connectivity, cybersecurity and autonomous technologies.
Testing emphases will include sensor technology development, vehicle/infrastructure communication, specification development for infrastructure scenarios such as: rural, residential, highway, overpasses, off-road, and urban; severe test conditions featuring various weather situations
“We have been working closely with Hyundai and are thrilled they have decided to take the next step with this significant investment to further our collaboration,” said John Maddox, president and CEO, ACM. “The Hyundai team has some unique developments they are working on and we are eager to help them achieve their goals.”
“Hyundai’s commitment to ACM is another example of its commitment to Michigan, and is a great addition to the other companies already partnering with the American Center for Mobility,” said Governor Rick Snyder. “It’s exciting to see the spirit of innovation continue at Willow Run that will help fuel job growth and solidify Michigan as the epicenter of automotive and mobility.”
The contribution from Hyundai brings ACM’s fundraising total to $101 million to develop the 500-acre state-of-the-art testing site at Willow Run. The Center’s first phase of construction is nearing completion and the testing and validation, product development, education and standards facility will open in December.
Hyundai joins other ACM Founders; AT&T, Toyota, and Ford, which announced their support of ACM earlier this year.
The ACM project is a joint initiative with the Michigan Economic Development Corporation, State of Michigan, Michigan Department of Transportation, the University of Michigan, Business Leaders for Michigan and Ann Arbor Spark.
As one of Hyundai Motor Group’s (HMG) six centers focused on research and development, Hyundai America Technical Center, Inc. was established in 1986 in Ann Arbor, Michigan. HATCI is HMG’s design, technology and engineering division for North America. As HMG solidified its position as one of the top five global OEMs, HATCI has grown to include a strong network of engineering disciplines and increased business-focused activities to support North America’s Voice of the Customer.
HATCI supports new model development for HMG’s North American operations and global programs from our dedicated engineering facilities and support staff at affiliate sites located throughout the United States (Alabama, California, Georgia, Michigan and Washington D.C.). HATCI’s success in satisfying the demands of increasingly sophisticated consumers is a direct result of HMG’s commitment to the future of American automotive engineering. HATCI upholds a strong R&D philosophy hinged on creative and passionate input of all team members. This philosophy is paramount to HMG’s North American operational strategy and serves as the foundation for engineering excellence and technological advancement.
The American Center for Mobility is a non-profit testing, education and product development facility for future mobility, designed to enable safe validation and self-certification of connected and automated vehicle technology, and to accelerate the development of voluntary standards. ACM is one of 10 U.S. DOT designated Automated Vehicle Proving Grounds in the U.S.
To learn more about ACM, visit www.acmwillowrun.org
Auto News by Vince Bodiford