Continental expands its global activities in software development for the automotive industry. As one of the leading providers in automated and connected mobility, Continental opens a development centre for software and systems in Chongqing, southwest China. It increases Continental’s local capacity for software development in China and allows the DAX-listed company to strengthen its software and system development expertise for modern vehicle concepts.
Nikolai Setzer, Continental CEO, said, “With this step, we are programming our organization for increased growth in China as the world’s largest automotive market. The key to success there is local value creation, which we are constantly increasing. Roughly one in ten Continental employees currently work in China, and they will be joined by a low triple-digit number of software and IT experts at our new development centre by the end of 2021,” He added: “We are at the forefront when it comes to software, employing around 20,000 software and IT specialists worldwide and operating our software academy. With the addition of Chongqing, we are further consolidating our global network of development centres and gaining even more expertise.”
Without software, functions in modern vehicle concepts are unable to interact
Future vehicles are intelligent and smart in components, systems and programs that communicate with each other – constantly, quickly and securely. To do so, they require a high degree of connectivity and automation. This is increasingly being made possible by versatile software applications. According to forecasts by a renowned consulting firm, global automotive software sales will multiply from $20 billion in 2019 to $50 billion in 2030. China will be the largest market, accounting for around 34 per cent of electronics and software revenue.
In China, the technologies developed by Continental embed innovative driver assistance systems, for example. It also controls high-performance computers and customer-friendly vehicle architectures and enables end-to-end connectivity of vehicle systems. “In China, speed is paramount. With our local development centre for software and systems, we are driving future mobility in the country. It will allow us to act even more flexibly and shorten our route to customers, with whom we will bring automotive trends to Chinese roads even faster. In this way, we will help them to stay ahead of their competitors with our pioneering, innovative technologies,” said Enno Tang, president and CEO of Continental China.
One billion vehicles currently have Continental software – and figures rises
To date, one billion vehicles have functions on board that bear the hallmark of Continental’s software and IT experts. To name just one example, Continental was one of the first automotive suppliers to develop an innovative high-performance computer, acting as a central interface to the internet and enables full vehicle connectivity. This pioneering breakthrough in vehicle development immediately went into production. Since autumn 2020, the computer has been the beating heart of the ID.3 and ID.4 electric vehicles and is now available in other models from Volkswagen.
Continental is shaping the transition to a modern, open mobility architecture
Intelligent connected vehicles are vital components of the automotive industry, especially in China. Continental is therefore increasingly driving the local transformation of electrical and electronic (E/E architecture) to a modern, open mobility architecture.
“Continental is celebrating its 150th anniversary this year and has been active in the Chinese market for 26 years. We have achieved remarkable results here,” said Tang, adding: “The new development centre is part of our strategy to increase value creation in China further. This is how we will ensure growth in the Chinese market in the long term.”