Hyundai Motor said on Friday it will spend $424 million to build an artificial intelligence (AI) research centre in the US to bolster its edge in robotics technology, an area it cites as a key future growth driver. Hyundai Motor, Kia and Hyundai Mobis — Hyundai’s three key auto affiliates — will invest $211.9 million, $127.1 million and $84.7 million, respectively, for the AI center that will be located in Boston, Hyundai’s regulatory filing showed.
The institute will “invest resources across the technical areas of cognitive AI, athletic AI and organic hardware design, with each discipline contributing to progress in advanced machine capabilities,” Hyundai said in a release on the website. The AI center, tentatively named the Boston Dynamics AI Institute, will be headed by Marc Raibert, founder and former chief of Boston Dynamics, a U.S. robotics company Hyundai acquired last year, reports Yonhap news agency.
Hyundai Motor, led by Chairman Euisun Chung, has heavily been investing in the development of automotive software and related mobility technologies, including Software Defined Vehicles (SDVs), a concept that the vehicle’s software capability will define the quality of the car and driving.
In a separate announcement, Hyundai said it will also establish a new software center in South Korea in an effort to accelerate efforts toward an expansion into self-driving, electrification and other advanced auto technologies. As part of the plan, Hyundai said it has recently acquired 42dot, a Seoul-based autonomous driving software and mobility platform startup, for 274.6 billion won ($211.1 million).