Volkswagen is strengthening its regional development expertise in autonomous driving in China through a joint venture between CARIAD and Horizon Robotics.

Volkswagen is strengthening its regional development expertise in autonomous driving in China through a joint venture between CARIAD and Horizon Robotics.


The Volkswagen Group is strengthening its development capabilities “in China, for China” to accelerate innovation, promote technological localization and further strengthen its customer focus in this important market. A new partnership between CARIAD, the software company of the Volkswagen Group, and Horizon Robotics, a leading provider of computing platforms for smart cars, will accelerate the regional development of advanced driver assistance systems (ADAS) and autonomous driving systems (AD) for the Chinese Market. CARIAD and Horizon Robotics intend to establish a joint venture as part of the partnership, in which CARIAD will hold a majority stake. The Volkswagen Group will invest a total of approximately EUR 2.4 billion in cooperation with Horizon Robotics. The transaction is expected to close in the first half of 2023. CARIAD and Horizon Robotics plan to jointly design innovative and optimized full-stack ADAS/AD solutions for the Chinese market to advance the integration of multiple functions on a single chip. This should increase system stability, save costs and reduce energy consumption. Fully integrated software and hardware technology enables diverse, scalable and cost-effective ADAS/AD solutions for the BEV segment in China. Completion of the transaction is subject to the signing of contracts by the parties involved and the issuance of the necessary official approvals, in particular the approval of the antitrust and foreign investment authorities.

“The cooperation with Horizon Robotics is an important part of the strategic restructuring and further strengthening of our business activities in our most important market in the world. The development of localized technology gives the region more freedom to strengthen its leading position in this dynamic automotive market. Thanks with the innovative technologies that the new joint venture will develop and that will cover the entire software and hardware stack, we will be able to adapt our products and services faster and better to the needs of our Chinese customers. The partnership with Horizon Robotics will enable Volkswagen to accelerate the development of driving systems automatic car as part of our NEW AUTO strategy and to continue the restructuring of our China business,” said Ralf Brandstätter, Member of the Management Board of Volkswagen AG China.

“As the global automotive software and technology company of the Volkswagen Group, CARIAD is a key force in the Group’s evolution into a software-based mobility service provider. Through a joint venture with Horizon Robotics in China and further investment in autonomous driving technology, “We are strengthening our position in the further development and modernization of the Chinese automotive industry. With this partnership, we are creating long-term value for the Group and our shareholders in line with the expected market development,” says CARIAD CEO Dirk Hilgenberg.

“Horizon Robotics has set itself the goal of further developing smart cars through integrated computer platforms in a way that makes people’s lives safer and more enjoyable,” says Dr. Kai Yu, Founder and CEO of Horizon Robotics. “As a leader in the business and large-scale production of driving computer solutions in China, we bring our expertise to the partnership with CARIAD to develop innovative technologies for smart car users. We are confident that with integrated software and hardware solutions we will be an attractive partner of international car manufacturers in China.”

Intelligent driving, made possible by modern ADAS/AD systems, is the key technology for future mobility and a market area with high growth potential – the pace of development plays an important role here. As part of the collaboration between CARIAD and Horizon Robotics, the establishment of a joint venture is planned, in which CARIAD will hold a 60 percent stake. CARIAD and Horizon Robotics want to accelerate the development and commercialization of machine learning technology in the automotive industry in China to quickly make automated driving a reality for Chinese customers.