March 4, 2022
TOKYO (Reuters) – Japan’s Sony Corp and Honda Motor Co Ltd said Friday they will team up to develop and sell battery-powered electric vehicles as the electronics maker advances its ambitions to become a key player in next-generation cars.
Both companies said in a statement that they would set up a joint venture this year and are looking to start selling the first model in 2025.
Honda will be responsible for producing the first model, and Sony will develop a mobile service platform, they said.
The presidents of both companies will hold a press conference in Tokyo at 5pm (8pm GMT) on Friday.
Sony CEO Kenichira Yoshida announced in January a plan to create a new company, Sony Mobility, saying it was studying the commercial launch of electric vehicles.
Although once dominant dominance in consumer electronics has been undermined by Asian competitors such as South Korea’s Samsung Electronics Co., Sony still has an arsenal of sophisticated technologies in areas such as sensors important for autonomous control.
The rapid transition to the proliferation of electric vehicles around the world, driven by the global push to reduce carbon emissions, creates opportunities for technology companies to join the automotive market as these vehicles are easier to manufacture than cars with internal combustion engines.
At the same time, these technology companies face the challenge of enforcing strict safety rules for vehicles and creating vehicles that can sometimes withstand harsh driving conditions.
(Report by Satoshi Sugiyama; Editors David Dolan, Christopher Cushing, Edwin Gibbs and Kenneth Maxwell)