Hyundai Motor to open R&D center in Singapore

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Hyundai Motor to open R&D center in Singapore

Hyundai Motor is establishing a global research and development center in Singapore as it plans to increasingly focus on eco-friendly and autonomous vehicles.

Korea’s largest automaker said Tuesday it will start construction on the new research facility, dubbed the Hyundai Mobility Global Innovation Center in Singapore, in May and have it ready by the second half of 2022.

After pledging in 2018 to transform itself from an automobile manufacturer into a mobility services provider, Hyundai Motor plans to launch eco-friendly vehicles, commercialize an autonomous driving platform and introduce new mobility services to the world by 2025. Hyundai Motor Group Executive Vice Chairman Euisun Chung has pledged more than 100 trillion won ($82 billion) in investments to that end.

Hyundai Motor’s sales have slipped, like those of many of its global competitors, amid declining demand for new cars across the world. The drop in consumption has intensified recently in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic.

The Singapore center will be in charge of leading Hyundai Motor’s reach into new markets while serving as a global innovation hub for the company. Hyundai Motor said the new center will also be tasked with providing future business directions for the company, such as developing smart manufacturing platforms and pursuing innovation in the automaker’s traditional business areas and value chains.

The center “will be a test bed to explore and validate the future Hyundai is envisioning,” Hyundai Motor President Seo Bo-shin said in a statement. “Combining Hyundai’s innovative spirit and Singapore’s fertile atmosphere, we will develop ground-breaking businesses and future technologies.”

With a total footprint of 44,000 square meters (473,612 square feet), the new center will be built in Singapore’s Jurong Innovation District, which is a regional hub for researchers, technology and factories.

With that geographical perk, Hyundai Motor said it is looking to partner with Singaporean firms to develop advanced mobility services.

The company also plans to pursue collaborative projects with local educational institutions and research centers.

BY KO JUN-TAE [ko.juntae@joongang.co.kr]

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