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Coventry Is On The Road To Becoming The Global Capital Of New Car Industry, Says Andy Street

West Midlands Mayor Andy Street believes Coventry can take on Silicon Valley, China, Germany and Detroit to win its rightful place at the centre of a new global motor industry.

Mr Street said work to develop autonomous ‘driverless’ vehicles is creating a “technological renaissance” in the city.

“Coventry has always been the very heart of the motor industry,” he said, “But as motoring changes, there is a huge new prize on offer. We have been working to ensure Coventry becomes the centre of the world-wide autonomous vehicle industry.”

“This is a race with Silicon Valley, China, German cities like Stuttgart, and Detroit in the US to be the global capital of the autonomous car revolution – and Coventry is on the road to that destination.

“We have put this ambition at the heart of our regional economic plans and have secured millions of pounds in Government money for research, and it is happening. There are now autonomous vehicles being tested on the roads of Coventry,” he said.

Coventry is also being earmarked as the hub of the support network for the new industry.

“Coventry and Warwickshire are to be home to a new £80 million national centre for developing the batteries of the future – creating the technology to power electric cars – and we’ve just been given £20 million in the Budget to create what is being called the ‘data centre’ for autonomous vehicles,” Mr Street said.

“This would be the ‘brain’ of the network, controlling things like insurance and licensing.

“Finally, with the West Midlands pioneering the roll-out of the 5G network, one of the major testbeds will be in Coventry, providing the vital connectivity for autonomous cars.”