Baidu and Geely partner on “intelligent” electric vehicles
Chinese search engine and technology giant Baidu is entering the eclectic vehicle market in partnership with compatriot automotive manufacturer Geely.
Baidu said it would provide “intelligent driving capabilities” powering vehicles designed and manufactured by Geely, parent company of a number of well known brands including Volvo and Lotus.
In a press release, Robin Li, co-founder and CEO of Baidu, said: "At Baidu, we have long believed in the future of intelligent driving and have over the past decade invested heavily in AI to build a portfolio of world-class self-driving services. China has become the world's largest market for EVs, and we are seeing EV consumers demanding next generation vehicles to be more intelligent."
"As a top Chinese automaker with global reach, Geely has the unique experience and resources to design, produce and market energy-efficient, reliable and safe automobiles in large scale. We believe that by combining Baidu's expertise in smart transportation, connected vehicles and autonomous driving with Geely's expertise as a leading automobile and EV manufacturer, the new partnership will pave the way for future passenger vehicles."
This is not the first time Baidu has entered the autonomous driving space, with previous efforts based around its Apollo self-driving platform. At Baidu World 2020, the company demonstrated what it referred to as “fully automated driving” on a Weltmeister electric vehicle platform. The company also said, after six million kilometres of on-road testing with zero accidents, the system was capable of driving without a safety driver at the helm.
AI is one of Baidu’s main focuses, with one of its products being its Baidu Brain AI technology platform. “Artificial intelligence is the core technology of the fourth-generation industrial revolution,” said Baidu CTO Haifeng Wang. “Baidu Brain can enable all industries to apply AI technology more efficiently, while accelerating the process of industrial intelligence.”