12 Carmakers, Auto Parts Manufacturers in Japan Set Up Joint Organization to Develop Advanced Semiconductors

Yomiuri Shimbun file photo
Toyota Motor Corp. head office

Twelve companies, including major Japanese carmakers, announced Thursday that they have established a joint research organization to develop advanced automotive semiconductors.

The companies participating in Advanced SoC Research for Automotive (ASRA), set up in Nagoya will jointly develop next-generation chips for automated driving and other purposes, aiming to install them in mass-produced vehicles in 2030 at the earliest.

The Yomiuri Shimbun

In addition to Toyota Motor Corp., Honda Motor Co., Nissan Motor Co. and Mazda Motor Corp., auto parts manufacturers such as Denso Corp. and Panasonic Automotive Systems Co. and chipmaker Renesas Electronics Corp. are taking part in ASRA.

Keiji Yamamoto, a senior fellow of Toyota, was appointed as the organization’s chairman.

A system on a chip, or SoC, is an integrated circuit that combines various functions on a single chip and is essential for advanced arithmetic processing in automated driving technology.

ASRA hopes to establish by 2028 ‘chiplets’ that combine different types of semiconductors and put them to practical use as early as 2030.

The government is strengthening its support for the chip industry, which is becoming increasingly important for economic security. It is also expected to consider providing support to research associations.