Sony and Honda plan joint electric vehicle firm
Stay tunned with 24 News HD Android App
Major global carmakers are increasingly prioritising electric and hybrid vehicles as concern about climate change grow.
The announcement comes on the heels of Sony's January unveiling of a new prototype, its Vision-S electric vehicle, and the announcement of a new subsidiary Sony Mobility to explore entering the EV market.
"Although Sony and Honda are companies that share many historical and cultural similarities, our areas of technological expertise are very different," Sony Group president Kenichiro Yoshida said in a statement.
"I believe this alliance which brings together the strengths of our two companies offers great possibilities for the future of mobility."
At a joint press conference, Honda CEO Toshihiro Mibe said discussions on the collaboration had picked up speed when Honda and Sony staff "felt big possibilities, like a chemical reaction" at a joint mobility workshop held last year.
Mio Kato, an analyst at Lightstream Research who publishes on Smartkarma, said Sony would be able to make use of its technology from image sensors to next-gen display as well as AI in the new vehicles.
At present, around 10 percent of European car sales are EVs, and the US figure is just two percent.
Earlier this year, the Nissan auto alliance promised to offer 35 new electric models by 2030 as it announced a total investment of $25 billion in the sector.
And last week, German auto giant Volkswagen said it was drawing up plans to list its luxury brand Porsche as it looks to raise the funds for its move to electric vehicles.
Yoshida emphasised on Friday that the new partnership was "not-exclusive".
"We want to expand it, because we want to contribute to and lead the evolution of mobility," he said.