French automobile maker Renault launched a new venture in Israel today to promote technological innovation in collaboration with Tel Aviv University's Center for Innovation in Transportation. Israeli vehicle importer Carasso Motors Ltd., which imports Renault vehicles, is also a partner in the venture, as is the Alternative Fuels Administration in the Prime Minister's Office.
The venture was inaugurated in the presence of a senior delegation from Renault. Its aim is to locate and monitor the activity of Israeli startups and established companies in the field of smart transport. Applications will be tested on Renault's electric urban cars.
In the coming weeks, the Center for Innovation in Transportation is due to issue a call for proposals to Israeli entrepreneurs and startups that wish to test their technologies on Renault electric vehicles. The proposals received will be examined by a panel of judges composed of representatives of all the partners in the venture. The vehicles used in the venture will be Renault's Zoe and Twizy models. Renault is also examining the possibility of participating in a trial of electric taxis in Eilat and other Israeli cities being promoted by the Prime Minister's Office.
Carasso Motors CEO Itzik Weitz, "This venture, the second of its kind in the world, is further proof of the important role of the State of Israel in innovation in general and technological innovation in particular. The substantial contribution of Israel's high-tech industry to the shaping of the next generation of transportation, and the international recognition and esteem won by Israel, are an important asset in helping the transportation industry meet the challenges that the future holds."
The vehicle manufacturing industry worldwide has lately shown growing interest in automotive technologies developed in Israel. General Motors recently announced its intention of tripling the number of people employed at its Israel research and development center and of turning the center into a focus for autonomous vehicle development. Volvo and Honda are also currently in advanced negotiations on setting up local representative offices to locate advanced vehicle technologies and ventures, with a view to investment.
Published by Globes [online], Israel business news - www.globes-online.com - on June 13, 2016
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