VW creates new ‘Car.Software’ unit. What is it?

June 20,2019

MORE than 5,000 digital experts. That is how many people Volkswagen AG said it intends to place in its new “Car.Software” unit.

In a statement, VW said Car.Software will be responsible for developing software for all models built by the entire VW Group. By 2025 the unit will be composed of experts in software development, electrical and electronics development, connectivity, automated driving, user experience, cloud architecture and e-commerce. They will work in five key areas and develop packages extending across the brands.

The company noted it plans to develop significantly more software in cars, as well as for vehicle-related services, by itself.

VW said it will boost the in-house share of software development from the current figure of less than 10% to at least 60% by 2025. This means the VW Group’s vehicles will have one uniform software platform for all the basic functions.

By 2025, all new VW Group models will run on the vw.os vehicle operating system and the Volkswagen Automotive Cloud software platform, the carmaker said.

The first vehicle based on this software platform will be the ID.31), which is to make its world debut at the IAA International Motor Show this year, added the company.

“We are platform professionals for hardware and are now transferring this competence to software development,” said Christian Senger, member of the board of management at Volkswagen. “We will develop software with uniform basic functions for all VW Group brands, which will allow us to drastically reduce complexity. In the medium term, we will benefit from the scale effects of our group. This is especially meaningful in the software field and will lead to tremendous cost advantages.”

VW said that at present, up to 70 control units with operating software from 200 different suppliers need to be integrated in Volkswagen brand vehicles. In addition, there are different systems with similar functions within the VW Group.

The carmaker said this will also apply to the brands’ “digital ecosystems” which will be used for offering the services.

With its standard software platform, VW said it is aiming to “achieve significant economies of scale,” citing its fleet will in future include more than 10 million fully connected new vehicles per year.

“We want to create a powerhouse for the digital car and cloud platform with the best digital experts in the world. We are convinced that Volkswagen will show what it can do. We will make software the core competency in our company,” Senger said. 

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