The competition calls on university students in teams of two to five to develop features that will make cars of 2030 more intelligent and intuitive, and with the potential to revolutionize the automobile industry.
Concerned about losing jobs to lower-cost countries, France has countered with the PFA industry coalition and two main efforts to advance automotive technology: autonomous vehicles and the affordable, high-fuel-efficiency small car.
On a daily basis, French deliveries fell 1.5%, but that still is a plus for a market that was off 9.9% after eight months. The CCFA trade group is confident calendar-2013 sales will come within 8% of year-ago.
The program was targeted at devising a toolkit that would reduce the time it takes to develop the human-machine interface, which puts controls for everything from the vehicle’s radio to advanced active-safety systems in front of the driver.
The production model will have the dual headlights that the C4 Picasso introduced and the show car’s uncluttered interior, with most of the passenger-compartment buttons and switches replaced by a large touchscreen.
Europe is not a big market for hybrids because diesels provide similar fuel savings at a lower cost. But future emissions regulations will require more-expensive aftertreatment for diesels, so gas hybrids will become more competitive.
While the revision of the 1.4L and 1.6L diesels is not specifically covered by the 2010 agreement with Ford, PSA is installing capacity for 640,000 engines at Douvrin in 2017 and will have another 640,000 in its own engine plant in Tremary in 2018.
France Info notes Renault’s authoritative management style is generating tension throughout the group, while the Huffington Post calls the recent flap a battle of egos between car-guy Tavares and manager Ghosn.