Sony and Honda are joining forces to form a joint EV venture that will combine two very different cultural approaches to develop and sell electric vehicles. The new company is scheduled to begin operations in 2025. It is believed that Sony will supply battery technology and also a new EV architecture based on the VISION-S 02 prototype that was revealed at the 2022 CES Show. Honda will provide its manufacturing expertise in addition to its retail, marketing and after-sales business.
Sony will provide its expertise in chip manufacturing, networking technologies, image sensing, and telecommunications. In addition, Sony will amplify its software and entertainment services such as movies and TV shows through the new business venture. Details are yet to emerge of specific manufacturing facilities, however, Honda will be responsible for the manufacturing.
Developing partnerships with technology companies is key to Honda’s plan to move away from the combustion engine era. Electric cars are seen as technology products and will offer transformative ways of driving not possible with legacy car technology. Consumers will be offered services similar to those seen on mobile phones.
Voice activation will become advanced enough to negate the use of physical buttons. Operating the temperature controls or activating cruise control or self-driving functions will be voice command only. Such technology is probably another 10 years away, however, the transition from combustion-powered cars to battery-powered technology vehicles begins now.
Sony has already made a statement of intent by creating a new company. Sony Mobility Inc is a kind of incubator company to explore and leverage its software and technology capability within the EV market.
Honda will phase out internal combustion engines by 2040. Before that, the company will launch a dedicated electric vehicle platform and solid-state battery technology in 2025.