Sony, the company perhaps best known for its televisions and stereos, is moving closer to entering the electric vehicle space.
Sony Group Corp. announced its new electric-vehicle unit, Sony Mobility Inc., at CES 2022. It also unveiled a prototype of its concept sport utility vehicle.
The company first announced its intention of creating a mobility unit in 2020. It unveiled the Vision-S 01 electric concept car last year. It has now shown off the Vision S 02, an SUV.
Courtesy of Sony
“Sony’s much-expected entry into the EVs will boost competition in the global EV market as similar technology companies also aim to foray their products in near-term,” said Bakar Sadik Agwan, senior automotive consulting analyst at GlobalData, following the announcement. “Further, the entry would beef up Japan’s game in the global market as some key domestic automakers’ eye BEV leadership, both locally and globally.”
The company has been positioning itself as a player in the automotive supply chain for some time now. Apart from semiconductors and electronics for the industry, it has also developed image sensors, AI, cloud, 5G and autonomous technology.
Agwan noted that Sony’s first concept vehicle “surprised” people with its Level 2 autonomous capabilities. Its ‘time of flight’ senses showed it was capable of detecting and recognizing people and objects.
“Top-notch technological features in its first concept resulted in positive market sentiments for Sony, regarding its capabilities to manufacture EVs,” he said.
Working in the company’s favour is its established leadership in the entertainment business. That’s a differentiator compared to other automakers.
“However, it will be worthy to wait and see if the entertainment/infotainment features could create a difference for Sony in the EV market,” Agwan observed. “Above all factors, Sony will have to face fierce competition from fast growing global automakers including Tesla, Toyota, Ford, Hyundai and GM, which are much ahead in the race.”