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Peugeot group unveils first “smart” car at international auto show in Hannover

Peugeot group unveils first “smart” car at international auto show in Hannover

The Internet of Things as applied in vehicles is in the limelight this week at the Hannover Messe in Germany, with Groupe PSA exhibiting its first so-called connected car in partnership with Chinese IT giant, Huawei.

The vehicle on display is a DS 7 Crossback, one of the marques in the Groupe PSA stable. The group manufactures and distributes DS, Peugeot, Opel, Citroen and Vauxhall. It is no coincidence that PSA chose the DS 7 Crossback to debut its connected car. It is reported to be the vehicle of choice of the French President, Emmanuel Macron.

Recently, PSA was in the local news when it announced its intention to establish an assembly plant in Walvis Bay to manufacture the Peugeot 3008 SUV and the Opel Grandland X. The factory is envisaged to be operational by 2020 with an initial production target of 5000 units per year.

In Hannover, Jean Leflour, PSA’s senior vice president of Connected Vehicle & Services Architecture Strategy, said: “The DS 7 Crossback is the first vehicle to benefit from this joint project which will ultimately be rolled out to all group vehicles,” by implication earmarking all cars produced in Walvis Bay to be so-called “smart” cars.

The DS 7 Crossback is the first vehicle to use Groupe PSA’s Connected Vehicle Modular Platform (CVMP) and is equipped with Huawei’s OceanConnect IoT platform and Cloud services supported by Huawei, giving drivers access to new connected services.

The DS 7 Crossback was launched earlier in April in China. It is the first vehicle in the Chinese market to benefit from PSA’s CVMP. Drivers can now access new services such as connected navigation, natural language voice recognition and a connected service portal via the vehicle’s dashboard screen. The vehicle’s maintenance status and the history of journeys and driving styles are also accessible from the customer’s smartphone.

Leon He, Head of the Automotive Business Unit in the Huawei Enterprise Business Group, stated: “The key to successful digital transformation of car manufacturers is to build a digital cloud platform. Based on the platform, car manufacturers, ecosystem developers, and industry application partners are gathered to jointly sell vehicle products and services across countries in the global market and provide personalized travel services to car owners and users.”



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SADC correspondents are independent contributors whose work covers regional issues of southern Africa outside the immediate Namibian ambit. Ed.