Yamaha Motor and Tier IV Establish JV for autonomous transportation service –Will help factories combat labor shortages through further automation–
Mar 27, 2020
Yamaha Motor Co., Ltd. and Tier IV, Inc. today announced the launch of eve autonomy, Inc., a joint-venture company based in Shizuoka Prefecture, Japan, that will develop an autonomous transportation service to help Yamaha Motor and other companies address chronic labor shortages and growing needs for high-mix low-volume production.
Beginning in April, eve autonomy will begin offering easily implemented solutions that combine Tier IV’s Autoware*, an open-source operating system for autonomous driving, and Yamaha Motor’s renowned vehicle-body development technologies. Envisioned subscription-type services and after-sales support will enable customer factories to respond nimbly to demand fluctuations and reduce their initial costs of implementation.
Yamaha Motor and Tier IV, which have jointly developed autonomous transportation services on a pilot basis, started to trial services on production lines this month at Yamaha Motor’s Hamakita Plant in Hamamatsu, as a step toward creating a smart factory.
Now, eve autonomy is taking over this pilot trial from its parent companies to provide the autonomous transportation service to Yamaha Motor manufacturing plants in Japan and overseas. As the next step, the company plans to leverage the knowhow it gains in optimizing the services at Yamaha Motor manufacturing plants to provide highly functional and reliable solutions to general customers.
Makoto Shimamoto, Yamaha Motor Director and Mobility Technology Division General Manager, said, “eve autonomy will provide an autonomous transportation service for extra-efficient labor-saving production. By combining Yamaha Motor’s expertise in hardware and reliability with Tier IV’s speed and cutting-edge technologies, I believe we will create unprecedented value.”
Shinpei Kato, Tier IV Founder and CTO said, “This collaboration between a leading Japanese company like Yamaha Motor and a deep-tech startup like Tier IV will be highly competitive on the global stage. By combining the expertise of our joint team and the capabilities of our Autoware, we aim to revolutionize autonomous transportation services. With the tough times the world is currently facing, we will do our best to provide something positive.”
Autonomous transportation vehicle
* Autoware is registered trademark of The Autoware Foundation
Overview of eve autonomy
CEO: Masanori Yonemitsu (seconded from Yamaha Motor)
Headquarters: 3001-10 Kuno, Fukuroi, Shizuoka Prefecture, Japan
Capital: 800 million yen (including capital reserve)
– Development, sales, leasing and renting of self-driving vehicles and industrial trolley cart(s)
– Provision of autonomous transportation services and related support and maintenance services