Faurecia, ZF partner to develop 'cockpit of the future' for self-driving cars

Patrick Koller, Chief Executive Officer of French car parts supplier Faurecia, poses before the company's 2016 annual results presentation in Paris, France, February 9, 2017. REUTERS/Philippe Wojazer

(Reuters) - French car parts supplier Faurecia said it signed a partnership agreement with German company ZF to develop interior and safety technologies for self-driving cars, dubbing it the “cockpit of the future”.

Global automakers and technology companies ranging from Alphabet’s Waymo to chipmaker Qualcomm are in a crowded race to develop self-driving vehicles.

“Together, we can offer complete interior safety features to meet the future challenges which will allow the interior of the future to be safe, connected, versatile and predictive,” Faurecia Chief Executive Patrick Koller said.

The companies will continue to work independently on current and upcoming projects, they added.

Faurecia, which is 46 percent owned by Peugeot, said the partnership would involve no capital exchange.

ZF, among the top suppliers in driveline and chassis technology as well as active and passive safety technology for cars and trucks, said in January that it is working with U.S.-based chipmaker Nvidia to develop artificial intelligence (AI) systems for the transportation industry.

“Networked ecosystems are not only at home in Silicon Valley,” ZF Chief Executive Stefan Sommer said.

Reporting by Thyagaraju Adinarayan in Gdynia; editing by Jason Neely