According to the leader of the German luxury automaker, although numerous technology companies – such as Google – are increasingly involved in the automotive industry, they are unlikely to become true mass-market carmakers.
The automotive industry has become increasingly focused on software and the emergence of autonomous driving, with numerous outsiders researching and developing systems and vehicles that have the potential to disrupt the industry. Google alone has been developing for years its own automated vehicles, which could be used to forego the typical usage scenario of a car, since they lack any traditional components – such as the steering wheel or the brake pedals. “Google and the likes want to get involved, I don’t think in the first place to build vehicles,” commented Daimler’s CEO Dieter Zetsche. The executive told analysts that Google’s true objective might be to offer viable transportation alternatives – rather than become a true manufacturer. “We have to understand that, and then to find our roles, to which extent they are complementary, to which extent we become dependent, to which extent we are competitors,” he said.
Zetsche told analysts that technology companies such as Google are now increasingly bridging the gap between the office, home and car as they refer to them as places where people usually spend their time. He also referred to the latest worries pertaining to the increasingly digital way of life of people today – with Mercedes-Benz focusing as part of its core safety strategy on the protection of personal data as well. “To be able to provide that, we have to keep control, and we can’t do that when it is collected by Google,“ added the chief executive.
Via Automotive News Europe