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Auto cluster aims for further upgrades



Shanghai has a good foundation and advantages in terms of the development of the automobile industry and will further improve its innovation and technology level in this sector.

Shanghai International Automobile City, a leading automobile industry cluster in China, has put great efforts in supporting enterprises’ business operations, attracting new investment as well as allocating resources and talent in order to create a healthy business environment.

It aims to attract more enterprises to invest in emerging industries, provide companies with the best policies and services and a great platform to promote future development of the automobile industry.

There are already a number of companies located in Shanghai International Automobile City, including car manufacturers, auto parts suppliers, autonomous driving companies, key components firms as well as fuel cell technology related companies.

To better support enterprises, Shanghai International Automobile City provides a “one-stop” service for the establishment of enterprises and strives to meet the needs of company registration. It also offers help with the taxation process and property location selection.

Technology and innovation is of great importance. Shanghai International Automobile City also offers guidance including intellectual property application, scientific and technological project application, high-tech enterprise cultivation and evaluation, technology transfer and achievement transformation.

It integrates financial platform resources, and provides listing guidance, financial services and support to facilitate enterprises’ development. Talent is the key for the business environment as the automobile city focuses on services such as talent introduction, staff accommodation, house purchase subsidies and children’s education, and organizes various talent exchange activities, aiming to create an excellent science and innovation environment.

Companies such as SAIC Volkswagen, Schaeffler, Pony.ai, AutoX, Baidu, Didi and others have benefited from the good business environment in Jiading District and supportive measures of Shanghai International Automobile City.

As the first pilot demonstration zone for intelligent and connected vehicles (ICVs) in China, the automobile city has set up the country’s first enclosed test area for ICVs, the country’s first intelligent road for testing and operation of ICVs, the country’s first intelligent driving holographic scene library, and established simulation test platform as well as the country’s first road test data analysis and monitoring center for ICVs.

In the future, Shanghai International Automobile City will further increase investment in supporting infrastructure, improve supporting system, gather leading companies and enhance the industry development and supporting system of the sector.

Accelerating technological innovation aside, making good use of big data has also become a driving force for the development of the new-energy vehicle industry.

For example, Shanghai Electric Vehicle Public Data Collecting, Monitoring and Research Center, takes advantage of big data application in Shanghai International Automobile City.

As of the end of October, the data center had cumulatively connected 375,000 new-energy vehicles from 89 car companies, involving 101 brands and 691 models. The data center cooperates with universities and institutes to carry out research on user habits and put forward suggestions on the promotion of new-energy vehicles. Research results will be used to further optimize policies and achieve precise guidance. In the future, data including charging poles, fuel cell vehicles and hydrogen refueling stations will also be included in the platform to achieve further functions.

In April last year, Jiading District, SAIC Motor, Huawei and China Mobile jointly launched a 5G strategic cooperation to further promote the development of smart transportation. The four parties set up a 5G Smart Transportation Demonstration Zone to promote 5G technology development and the Internet of Vehicles.

The second phase of this project was launched this year. Under the plan, Shanghai International Automobile City will build a holographic sensing and all-digital smart road covering the whole area of Jiading. SAIC Motor’s 5G smart cars have been put into pilot application. A smart transportation network, 5G communication network and BeiDou positioning service network have been built.

Li Lin, deputy chief engineer of Shanghai International Automobile City, said: “In fact, as early as 2017, Shanghai International Automobile City joined the 5GAA (5G Automotive Association) as the world’s first public service base. This opportunity has led Jiading to jointly plan 5G smart transportation demonstration project with SAIC Motor, China Mobile and Huawei.”

At the 2020 World Autonomous Vehicle Ecosystem Conference held in September this year, Jiading made another big move. It will start the full-scale opening of test roads for intelligent and connected vehicles. In the next step, the district will build 3,000 5G base stations to realize the opening of nearly 1,300 kilometers of test roads in Jiading, covering 463.55 square kilometers

In June, Didi Chuxing launched a test “robotaxi” service in Jiading after installing V2X (Vehicle to Everything) hardware. Citizens can sign up on the Didi mobile app and make an appointment to experience Didi’s autonomous driving service. It marks that Shanghai’s intelligent and connected vehicle demonstration application has entered a large-scale stage.

Pony.ai, an autonomous driving startup founded in 2016, signed a strategic cooperation agreement with Shanghai in July, announcing the beginning of the strategic layout and research and development process in the Yangtze River Delta region. The company will set up an autonomous driving car fleet in Shanghai International Automobile City.

Lou Tiancheng, co-founder and chief technology officer at Pony.ai, said: “Jiading provides us a new and resourceful test environment and urban traffic scenarios, which are conducive to our continuous upgrade of autonomous driving technology.”

After 19 years of hard work, Shanghai International Automobile City has become an automobile industry base with various functions covering research and development, system adaptation, trade, finance, education, cultural expo, event tourism, etc. It will further deepen the development in the field of new-energy vehicle, intelligent and connected vehicle and other sectors and will strive to build itself into a world-class automobile industry cluster and further attract key projects and talent.