Mobility start-up BYTON announced its North American headquarters in Silicon Valley are now fully operational, marking further progress in the company’s strategic effort to establish a global presence.
Dr. Carsten Breitfeld, BYTON CEO and co-founder, and Dr. Daniel Kirchert, president and co-founder, attended the opening ceremony, along with part of the core management team. They introduced new team members Tom Wessner, senior vice president of global supply chain, and Jeff Chung, vice president of intelligent car experience.
Tim Grayson, assembly member of State of California, and Zhang Jianxin, Chinese deputy consul general of the consulate general in San Francisco, also delivered remarks at the event, welcoming BYTON to Silicon Valley.
BYTON used the occasion to announce it has entered into strategic partnerships with Bosch and Faurecia to jointly develop smart mobility solutions.
Since its inception in 2016, BYTON has made its global vision clear by establishing a strategic presence in China, Germany and the U.S. as the global digital transformation in the mobility sector comes of age. BYTON’s global operation center, manufacturing base and global R&D center are located in Nanjing, China. The R&D center responsible for the design of prototype and concept models is based in Munich, Germany.
The company’s North American headquarters are now open in Silicon Valley. The key focus of the office is developing cutting-edge technologies, including intelligent car user experience, autonomous driving, whole vehicle integration as well as developing and overseeing operations in the North American market. A strategic global presence in three key markets helps ensure the company’s access to a diverse pool of talent and other resources, as well as promote BYTON’s product development and launch, the company says.
BYTON’s North American headquarters has more than more than 120 employees, bringing together a number of leading talents in smart connected technology from across the world. BYTON plans to add another 200 jobs in the next year.
“BYTON’s idea of marrying the automotive industry with digital technology is well in line with the development direction of technology as represented by Silicon Valley. Silicon Valley’s strength in technology and talent will provide powerful support for BYTON’s R&D endeavor in intelligent driving,” said Dr. Breitfeld.
“BYTON’s core management team combines the R&D and manufacturing experience of traditional premium car making with strengths in digital innovation and technology thanks to our group of talents in automotive design, engineering and manufacturing, electrical powertrain, smart connectivity, autonomous driving, intelligent car experience, supply chain management, marketing and more,” said Dr. Kirchert. “This will serve as a critical guarantee for BYTON’s quality growth and development, and differentiation. The additions of Tom Wessner and Jeff Chung further boost BYTON’s technological strengths in innovative supply chain management and development of intelligent vehicle user experience.”
Wessner is a veteran supply chain expert with more than 30 years of experience in the automotive industry. During his service with Tesla, he established the purchasing and quality functions capable of attracting global suppliers to fuel the rapid growth and success of the Tesla Model S sedan. His joining the BYTON team further enhances BYTON’s cost control capability during product development and production.
Chung is a seasoned global engineering executive and product development leader of innovative products and disruptive technologies in consumer electronics, imaging and networking. While working at Apple, Chung led system engineering teams in designing multiple Mac products. At BYTON, his engineering team will be dedicated to combining traditional car functions with digital technologies to deliver an intelligent car experience.
BYTON has inked strategic partnerships with Bosch and Faurecia, strengthening its global supply chain. BYTON will mainly work with Bosch on powertrain and braking systems. It will work with Faurecia on the development and design of advanced interior technologies that takes advantage of the latest technologies in EV architecture, connected user interface and autonomous driving features.
First driveable prototype to debut at CES 2018
The age of the smart vehicle is coming, driven by technological innovations such as electrification, seamless interconnection and autonomous driving. BYTON is positioning its products as the “next generation of smart devices for shared mobility and autonomous driving,” and the all-new smart human-vehicle interface is a key feature. It includes a 49×10-inch large-size screen for shared experience and a touch steering wheel, as well as gesture recognition, facial recognition and emotion recognition, among others, laying a foundation for truly shared and smart mobility and auto piloting.
BYTON plans to launch three models on the same platform in the next five years: an SUV, a sedan and an MPV. The first production SUV model will launch in the fourth quarter of 2019, while the sedan and MPV are scheduled to hit the market in 2021 and 2022, respectively. A critical milestone for BYTON, the brand’s first driveable prototype will make its world premiere at CES 2018 in Las Vegas in January 2018. The coming prototype will offer a smart, safe, enjoyable and eco-friendly driving experience with a groundbreaking design language and vehicle-to-vehicle communication system, showcasing BYTON’s car building philosophy and technological capabilities.