Klaus Frohlich, member of the Board of Management of BMW AG, Development, introduces the BMW Vision iNEXT electric autonomous concept car during a BMW press conference at the Los Angeles Auto Show in Los Angeles, California, U.S. November 28, 2018.
(photo credit: REUTERS/MIKE BLAKE)
German automobile giant BMW will open a technology office in Tel Aviv to tap into local talent and innovation, the company has announced.
“Tel Aviv has one of the fastest growing startup scenes in the world – especially in the important future fields for us such as autonomous driving or connectivity,” said Klaus Fröhlich, Member of the Board of Management of BMW AG Development.
“By establishing a presence in Tel Aviv, we will secure even faster access to the relevant trends and technologies, be it with startups or universities.”
The BMW Group Technology Office, the fifth opened by the company worldwide, is set to open later this year. A small team will be recruited to network with local innovators and pursue relevant technologies, and to establish joint research projects with Israeli universities.
“The mobility and smart transportation sector is one of the fastest growing in the world. The opening of the BMW Group Technology Office in Israel is a vote of confidence in the Israeli innovative companies and ecosystem,” said Economy Minister Eli Cohen.
“It is yet another proof that in this new era of the automotive industry, with the strong focus on innovative technologies, the State of Israel can and does play a key role.”
The establishment of the technology office does not represent BMW’s first entry into the Israeli automotive market. In April 2018, BMW selected Kfar Saba-based Innoviz Technologies to manufacture a solid-state lidar sensing solution for its autonomous vehicles.
The company has also invested in Israeli transit app Moovit and has partnered with Intel’s Mobileye to co-develop an autonomous driving platform.
While Israel’s brief interest in car manufacturing, including Autocars’ Sussita model, enjoyed little success, the country has emerged as a leading hub of automotive technology and R&D in recent years.
Leading automotive manufacturers including Porsche, Honda, Hyundai, Skoda, SAIC, Renault and Daimler have all invested in Israel-based innovation offices in recent years.
Join Jerusalem Post Premium Plus now for just $5 and upgrade your experience with an ads-free website and exclusive content. Click here>>