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JLR Unveil Futuristic Driverless Car Concept at National Automotive Innovation Centre Opening

Jessica Tabinor JLR

NAIC opening JLR

The UK’s National Automotive Innovation Centre has officially been opened by the Prince of Wales. The new centre will be one of Europe’s largest automotive research development centres able to shape the future of the automotive industry from the heart of the UK.

The 150m centre is based at the University of Warwick in Coventry and will bring together the brightest minds from the industry and academia with researchers, engineers and designers from Jaguar Land Rover (JLR), Tata Motors and WMG. Its aim? To provide a collaborative environment for UK engineers to help shape the future of the global automotive industry. The NAIC will be a beacon for future mobility and sustainability research and development, right in the heart of the Midlands ecosystem which is a magnet for economic growth and delivering a Destination Zero future.

The 33,000m² centre includes cutting-edge workshops, laboratories, virtual engineering suites and advanced powertrain facilities. Along with its state-of-the-art facilities, the centre also offers a multitude of education programmes, through which NAIC students and apprentices can work alongside experts and leaders in their fields.  

At the official opening of the innovation centre yesterday, Jaguar Land Rover demonstrated its latest advanced autonomous research concept vehicle. The concept vehicle will play a vital part in the company’s Destination Zero mission which aims to make societies safer, healthier and the environment cleaner. The compact, flexible vehicle concept measures just four metres in length and is designed for the city, packaging all its battery and drivetrain components into a flat floor. A pilot programme of testing on the streets of Coventry is planned for 2021.

CEO of JLR, Professor Sir Ralf Speth said:

“Here academics, manufacturers and suppliers will develop a smart, safe transport infrastructure that integrates autonomous vehicles and public transport; design zero-emissions vehicles powered by smart-chargers and renewable energy and discover material and digital manufacturing innovations that will eliminate waste.

We are honoured that HRH The Prince of Wales has joined us today to open the National Automotive Innovation Centre.”

The idea for the NAIC was brought to life by the late Professor Lord Bhattacharyya who was the founder of WMG.

Professor David Mullins, Interim Head of WMG, added:

“The late Professor Lord Bhattacharyya’s vision was for future generations of designers, researchers and engineers to be inspired to innovate through collaborative research projects with manufacturers, suppliers and academia at the National Automotive Innovation Centre.”


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