Ford Motor Co. has opened its Research and Innovation Center Palo Alto, aimed at accelerating the carmaker’s innovation in connectivity, mobility, autonomous vehicles, customer experience and big data. Mark Fields, Ford president and chief executive, remarked that the new research center shows the company’s commitment to be part of the Silicon Valley innovation ecosystem.
He added that the new Research and Innovation Center Palo Alto is working on new technologies -- connectivity, mobility and autonomous vehicles – to make them accessible to everyone. The Research and Innovation Center Palo Alto, located in Stanford Research Park, is the newest of Ford’s research and innovation centers around the world.
One of these research and innovation centers is located in Dearborn, Michigan, which works on advanced electronics, human-machine interface, materials science, big data and analytics. Another one is located in Aachen, Germany, focusing on next-generation powertrain research, driver-assist technologies and active safety systems.
The new research center in Palo Alto will be home to around 125 researchers, engineers and scientists by the end of 2015, making it one of the largest car-making research centers in Silicon Valley. The new research center will be led by Dragos Maciuca as senior technical leader for innovation.
He is an engineer with a background in consumer electronics, semiconductor manufacturing, aerospace and automotive with vast extensive Silicon Valley experience advising startups, developing and commercializing products while collaborating with universities and leading cross-functional teams.
The carmaker recently introduced at the 2015 International CES the Ford Smart Mobility, which outlines the carmaker’s plans to accelerate innovation in connectivity, mobility, autonomous vehicles, customer experience and big data – areas where the research center in Palo Alto will focus on. [source: Ford]