Qualcomm, Renault go up a gear in electric vehicle partnership

Leading car manufacturer and mobile technologies firm announce plan to enter a strategic long-term cooperation, encompassing co-development of high-performance computing platforms based on Snapdragon Digital Chassis Solutions for next generation of software-defined vehicles

Software-defined vehicle (SDV) platforms that support digital cockpit, connectivity and advanced driver assistance systems (ADAS) are seen as the future for automotive, and looking to drive ahead in the sector, Renault Group and Qualcomm Technologies have announced they intend to take their existing technology collaboration one step further and deliver a centralised compute architecture for Renault’s next generation of software-defined vehicles, based on the Snapdragon Digital Chassis.

The technological collaboration between the two firms started in 2018. Since then, Renault has featured Snapdragon Cockpit Platforms in the Renault Megane E-Tech Electric’s OpenR Link multimedia system, and has plans to use Snapdragon Digital Chassis services to deliver enhanced connectivity and intelligent in-car experiences to its drivers and passengers.

The extended partnership will also see Qualcomm Technologies, or one of its affiliates, invest in Renault Group’s dedicated electric and software company, Ampere.

Renault Group and Qualcomm Technologies also plan to deliver a next-generation SDV architecture, using what are described as extensible offerings to address the evolving needs and requirements for vehicles.

From 2026, Renault vehicles will use the SDV platform, including new generations of the Snapdragon Digital Chassis, designed to power new Android cockpits and make the on-board experience more immersive and personal.

It will also aim to centralise other vehicle functions, such as ADAS, body, chassis, telematics, connectivity, power line communications, safety and cyber security in the physical computer unit.

The latter is designed to optimise hardware and software costs, allowing connection to the physical interface unit, which provides the zonal interface with the vehicle’s actuators. In parallel, the SDV architecture is designed to be open to other vehicle manufacturers.

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By working with Qualcomm, Renault also aims to optimise its development and commercialisation plans through a co-development approach, which provides the right system level platform capabilities for hardware, software and services.

“From the mobile to the car, with advanced and revolutionary technology, the software-defined vehicle is the future of the automotive industry: it is about meeting expectations in terms of functionality and services while controlling complexity and costs,” said Renault Group CEO Luca de Meo. “Renault Group is strengthening its strategic collaboration with Qualcomm Technologies, a major mobile and automotive technology player, to bring the first open and horizontal software-defined vehicle platform to the automotive market.

“The combination of Renault Group’s expertise in automotive technology and Qualcomm Technologies’ proven leadership in the high-performance, low-power semiconductors, software and systems platforms will enable us to provide a scalable, competitive and innovative software-defined vehicle platform foundation to drive the services ecosystem and deliver value to our customers.”

Cristiano Amon, Qualcomm Incorporated president and CEO, added: “Qualcomm is very proud of its relationship with the Renault Group and the expansion of our collaboration to jointly define the car of the future with leading semiconductors, software and services. We are thrilled to have our Snapdragon Digital Chassis solutions play a pivotal role in ushering in their next generation of software-defined vehicles and help accelerate the digital transformation of the automobile.”

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