Today, Honda Motor Co,. Ltd. and Sony Group Corporation announced in a press release they have agreed to form a strategic alliance that aims to develop new electric vehicle technologies and mobility services.
In a joint statement released earlier today, Honda and Sony said, “Specifically, the two companies have signed a memorandum of understanding that outlines their intent to establish a joint venture (“New Company”) through which they plan to engage in the joint development and sales of high value-added battery electric vehicles (EVs) and commercialize them in conjunction with providing mobility services.”
Honda and Sony will continue to negotiate toward various binding agreements, including a joint development agreement and joint venture agreement, the statement said. The new company could be established before the end of the year, a goal of both companies in the partnership.
Honda’s many years of automotive experience and Sony’s expertise of imaging, sensing, telecommunications, network, and entertainment aims “to realize a new generation of mobility and services that are closely aligned with users and the environment, and continue to evolve going forward.”
“Sony’s Purpose is to ‘fill the world with emotion through the power of creativity and technology,’” Sony Group Corp. CEO Kenichiro Yoshida said. “Through this alliance with Honda, which has accumulated extensive global experience and achievements in the automobile industry over many years and continues to make revolutionary advancements in this field, we intend to build on our vision to ‘make the mobility space an emotional one,’ and contribute to the evolution of mobility centered around safety, entertainment, and adaptability.”
Sales of the first electric vehicle from the Sony-Honda venture are expected to start in 2025. The New Company will be responsible for the planning, design, development, and sale of the EV, but not own and operate manufacturing facilities, it said. Honda’s 31 global automotive plants will be responsible for the production of the EV model. Additionally, it is expected that a mobility service platform will be developed by Sony.
“The New Company will aim to stand at the forefront of innovation, evolution, and expansion of mobility around the world, by taking a broad and ambitious approach to creating value that exceeds the expectations and imagination of customers,” Honda CEO Toshihiro Mibe said. “We will do so by leveraging Honda’s cutting-edge technology and know-how in relation to the environment and safety, while aligning the technological assets of both companies. Although Sony and Honda are companies that share many historical and cultural similarities, our areas of technological expertise are very different. Therefore, I believe this alliance which brings together the strengths of our two companies offers great possibilities for the future of mobility.”
Sony has had evident plans to join the EV sector and develop vehicles, showcasing the Vision-S 02 prototype at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas this year. Sony has been testing Level 2 autonomy systems in Europe using the Vision S 01 sedan that it unveiled last year, according to Car and Driver.