Renesas will send four teams of engineers to work with Great Wall counterparts at the Chinese automaker's facilities in Hebei Province. There, they will jointly develop self-driving technology, motor and battery control mechanisms for electric and hybrid vehicles, communication systems, and information and entertainment systems that make use of on-board monitors.
Initially, Renesas will dispatch dozens of personnel. The total headcount between both partners will eventually expand to roughly 100 developers in each of the four domains.
The project will contribute to the development of next-generation vehicles. For example, Renesas engineers will select and design electronic devices, such as microcontrollers for electric-vehicle inverter systems, as well as power semiconductors. These devices are expected to improve system performance and conserve power.
Renesas will provide the technology and expertise it has amassed over the years in order to expand its own semiconductor sales in China, where electric vehicles and self-driving technology are making rapid inroads. The tie-up will also serve to gauge future technological trends, helping Renesas narrow the gap with stronger European rivals operating in China.
Great Wall is an independent automaker with sales of over 1 million units a year. It is especially strong in sport utility vehicles.