Australia’s wine capital set to become driverless Mecca
International autonomous vehicle components supplier RDM Group will open an office at Flinders University’s Tonsley Campus this week.
RDM Group’s Asia-Pacific headquarters will be working on delivering the UK’s first driverless vehicles for use on public roads with long-term plans to develop an assembly facility in South Australia.
The British company will create a bespoke assembly facility to coincide with the SA government’s $10 million Future Mobility Lab Fund to boost local testing, research and development of autonomous and connected vehicle tech.
More than 40 applications were received for a share of the fund, worth over $20 million and will be assessed before approved initiatives are announced.
RDM Group CEO David Keene says the time is right for the investment.
“There is massive demand for creating autonomous mobility solutions in Australia,” he said, “We want to make sure our technology is at the forefront of any new developments.”
“The opportunity deserves a local presence and we are delighted to have taken a technical office at Flinders University, within the world class Tonsley Innovation District,” he added.
Australian Driverless Vehicle Initative (ADVI) executive director Rita Excell says the deal has come at the right time.
“We have been working very closely with Investment Attraction South Australia’s Future Industry and Advanced Manufacturing area to identify and attract world leading driverless technology providers to South Australia,” she said.
“ADVI’s economic paper has identified that up to 15,000 jobs can be created from the automative vehicle industry and South Australia’s leadership has them well placed to attract a large share of these direct and indirect jobs to South Australia,” she adds.
Excell notes that RDM Group is the first of a number of companies ‘seriously considering’ establishing a base in SA.
RDM Group is a UK-based firm producing autonomous vehicles within the L-SATS (Low-Speed Autonomous Transport System) sector, it’s first vehicle being a low-speed commuter pod.