12:55-1:20 pm EST – Continental

Continental announced for the first time worldwide that it is launching what it called the first online “open platform for automated driving” at 2025AD.com.

Executives of the supplier of a vast array of automotive systems and components said that it is inviting automotive OEMs, the technology industry, the media, government, academics and consumers to use the online platform to discuss traffic safety, connectivity, legal and regulatory issues involved in achieving autonomous driving. Continental expects it to be widely available in 2025.

“There is no single platform on the web to allow dialog among the stakeholders in automated driving,” Continental CEO Elmar Degenhart said. He expects 2025AD.com to “increase knowledge and [the] exchange of ideas” on automated driving “in a non-competitive tone.”

Continental itself has become a bigger and bigger player in automotive connectivity and the push for self-driving, and the Germany-based company demonstrated some of its new capabilities at the International Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas last week.

The company is actively testing automated-driving technologies in North America, Europe, and Asia, and is striving to become a crucial player in establishing connections between the vehicle per se and outside nodes – such as other vehicles and the traffic infrastructure – that must work with vehicles to make automated driving ultimately successful.

“We are not just a component supplier or a systems integrator but a services provider,” said Jeffrey Klei, president for the NAFTA region for Continental Automotive Divisions. “And we need to be more open as an industry to work with other industries.” He pointed out that Continental, for example, recently has worked with IBM and Cisco on digital matters.

“We need,” Klei said, “to become more of an integrator between industries.”