UK Government Invests $38 Million in Driverless Cars
With the British exit from the European Union looming, the UK is looking to the auto industry to help boost their economy and secure jobs through the upcoming years. Today, Business Secretary Greg Clark and Transport Minister John Hayes announced the government investment of $136.7 million (£109.7 million) across 38 different automobile projects, as a part of the Plan for Britain.
These 38 proposed projects feature a focus on the next generation of both driverless and low-carbon emission cars. 24 of the projects are driverless-oriented and will received $38 million (£31 million) in Centre for Connected and Autonomous Vehicles (CCAV) grants from the government.
According to Business Green, the projects include "cars and pods to transport passengers between Stockport train station and Manchester Airport; proposals to create vehicles capable of driving in a range of road environments; and work to develop technology which could make any car operate autonomously."
The projects were developed by some major motor vehicle players, such as BMW, Ford, and Jaguar Land Rover. The funds awarded will be match funded by the auto industry.
In the government press release, addressing the investments, Clark emphasized the prioritization of both autonomous driving and the environment:
Low carbon and driverless cars are the future and as a Government we are determined through the Industrial Strategy to build on our strengths and put the UK at the forefront of this revolution. Investment in this technology is an integral part of this Government's efforts, to ensure the UK auto sector remains competitive and world-leading.
The Department for Business, Energy, and Industrial Strategy also claims this will safeguard almost 2,400 jobs, so the British people definitely have a reason to be excited about the future of automobiles.