Volvo and Autoliv aim to sell self-driving cars with Nvidia AI tech by 2021

Volvo is forming a new joint partnership with Autoliv, called Zenuity, with a focus on developing self-driving automotive software. The plan is to eventually get to the point where they can field self-driving cars for sale, based on Nvidia’s Drive PX in-car AI computing platform, by the not-so-distant target year of 2021.

That’s a tall order, but Nvidia’s Drive PX is already being used to power self-driving vehicles in road testing today, including Nvidia’s own demonstration vehicles. Volvo and Autoliv’s Zenuity will use Nvidia’s AI car compute groundwork as the basis for their own software development, with the hopes of speeding up the development progress of Volvo’s commercially-targeted autonomous vehicles.

The software that we’re doing with them will be in some cases unique to Volvo,” explained Nvidia’s Senior Director of Automotive on call. “But Autoliv also has the rights to make the software available to other automakers. I think we’re starting to see, in the industry, these types of collaborations, and the opportunity to leverage from Nvidia a lot of this great work as well.”

Zenuity, as a new entity, will provide the resulting self-driving software from the partnership to Volvo directly, while Autoliv will also sell the same software to third-party OEMs using its existing supply channels and relationships. It’s great news for Nvidia, too, since that means their PX platform will be a key ingredient for OEMs looking to implement the system in their own vehicles.

Autoliv, a longtime safety technology supplier for the automotive industry, has been working on active safety systems including radar, vision and other ADAS tech for quite some time. But the company says that Nvidia’s AI platform will help it take its own autonomous and driver assistance tech to the next level.

Volvo and Nvidia had previously partnered for Volvo’s “Drive Me” autonomous car pilot program, but this is the first time the two have announced a partnership aimed at commercial sales of vehicles.