Connected vehicles and electric mobility are at centre stage. The earlier is a buzzword in industry whereas latter is a pet of governments, environmentalists. Both electric and connected mobility are being seen as most potent transformative technologies for future which will create paradigm shift in manufacturing, commuting, market, almost in all related spheres and above all how a car will bee seen in future. Surely, it will not be a mere transporting machine rather an intelligent customised robot, thanks to AI, software and sensors getting embedded into the concepts from automobile designing to end usages.
The two auto giants Mahindra & Mahindra and American carmaker Ford have come together in a strategic alliance again and signed a MoU with a initial three year period for companies to jointly work and increase their business to ride on wave of electric and connected mobility in India and abroad. A whiff of this was first reported by ToI as an impending partnership between Ford and M&M in its edition dated March 3, 2017. “The enormous growth potential in the utility market and the growing importance of mobility and affordable battery electric vehicles are all aligned with our strategic priorities. Ford is committed to India and this alliance can help us deliver the best vehicles and services to customers while profitably growing in the world’s fifth largest vehicle market,” said Jim Farley, Ford executive vice president and president of Global Markets.
Ford, has been in Indian market for more than 20 years. Despite having invested nearly $2 billion in India, is yet to find winning strategies for the local market. The company’s operations in India are still in losses. Despite more than two decades of presence here, it sold less than 1 lakh cars in 2016-17 (91,405 units). This was nearly 3% of India’s 3-million-strong passenger vehicles market.
Dr. Pawan Goenka, managing director Mahindra and Mahindra Ltd elaborated: “The changes facing the automotive industry globally are triggered by the accelerated rise of new technologies, sustainability policies and new models of urban shared mobility. Given these changes we see the need to anticipate new market trends, explore alternatives and look for ways to collaborate even as we compete and build powerful synergies that will allow rapid exploitation of the exciting new opportunities. Today’s announcement builds on the foundation laid through our past partnership with Ford and will open opportunities for both of us.”
While M&M, with an early start is a leading player in electric mobility and brings expertise in economical component sourcing, low-cost electric technology and has a established Indian sales and distribution network.
M&M is looking to gain in emerging developmental technologies, global distribution and other key R& D areas in connected vehicle space