Sony Group and Honda form a strategic partnership aimed at creating a new generation of mobility and services that are closely aligned with users and the environment.
In June, the companies established Sony Honda Mobility, which intends to sell high-end electric vehicles with advanced technology starting in 2025 and provide mobility services. The main markets it plans to serve include Japan, the U.S. and Europe.
"We are very pleased to sign this joint venture agreement, which represents the start line from which we embark on the major challenge of revolutionizing mobility and creating new value,” says Yashuhide Mizuno, Sony Honda Mobility representative director, chairman, and CEO and senior managing officer of Honda.
“We plan to fully leverage the technological assets the two companies possess in different fields, such as Sony's sensing technology and Honda's original mobility development capabilities, to realize mobility and services that inspire and excite our customers,” he says.
Adds Izumi Kawanishi, Sony Honda Mobility representative director, president and COO and executive vice president of Sony: “By combining the many strengths of Sony and Honda, we intend to accelerate development and lead the evolution of mobility by realizing mobility as an emotional space rooted in safety and security, and the related services.”
Sony Honda Mobility is expected to plan, design, develop and sell the EVs but not own or operate the manufacturing facilities, the company says. Instead, Honda will manufacture the first EV model at its plant and Sony will develop the mobility service platform for the new company.
A Sony spokesperson says the company is in the early stages of determining advanced driver-assistance systems features planned for its vehicles as well as the sensors and processors that will be used.
The companies’ talks date back to the summer of 2021, when Honda proposed meeting with Sony to consider the future of mobility. Soon after, members of both organizations held a joint workshop to begin discussions and exchange ideas.
After top management from both organizations met, the companies announced in March that they signed a memorandum of understanding to establish a joint venture company focused on creating a new era of mobility and mobility services.
Both companies bring a unique perspective to the table:
Honda will share its knowledge of the environment and safety as well as technologies, including dynamics and packaging hardware. It is also expected to provide expertise in procurement and production related to the vehicle creation process.
Sony’s initiatives, based on its vision to “make the mobility space an emotional one,” are centered around safety, entertainment and adaptability.
In terms of safety, the company will provide imaging devices and sensing technology, such as complementary metal oxide semiconductor (CMOS) image sensors. Regarding entertainment, Sony will offer content and services in addition to video and audio technology.
To ensure adaptability and work toward the evolution of entertainment and safety-related function, Sony will also share its knowledge of communication and network technology, including 5G and cloud services.
Kenichiro Yoshida, Sony Group Corporation representative corporate executive officer, chairman, president and CEO, says the companies aim to contribute to the evolution of mobility by combining Honda's cutting-edge environmental and safety technologies, mobility development capabilities, vehicle body manufacturing technology and after-sales service management experience with Sony’s expertise in imaging, sensing, telecommunication, network and entertainment technologies.
Toshihiro Mibe, Honda director, president, representative executive officer and CEO, says Honda continues to take on new challenges in environmental, safety and other advanced fields to be a driving force for social change through mobility.