Sony beefs up electric vehicle ambitions with plans for new company

Sony already has advanced technology in sensors critical to autonomous driving, as well as the audio and entertainment systems

Japanese electronics firm Sony Group Corp plans to launch a company in spring 2022 to explore entering the electric vehicle market, signaling ambitions to claim a slice of the fast-growing market for green mobility.

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Announcing the new company, Sony Mobility Inc, in a news conference ahead of the CES technology trade fair in the United States, Sony's chairman and president, Kenichiro Yoshida, said the company was "exploring a commercial launch" of electric vehicles.

Sony, Japanese electronics giant announces Vision - S 02, its new electric SUV during the CSE 2022, consumer tech show in Las Vegas, Nevada State, on Jan. 4, 2022. The conglomerate Sony Group will launch a subsidiary company Sony Mobility Inc. to acc (( The Yomiuri Shimbun ) / Reuters Photos)

Shares in Sony jumped 4% in morning trade in Tokyo, outpacing a flat Nikkei index.

Sony already has advanced technology in sensors critical to autonomous driving, as well as the audio and entertainment systems that are increasingly a focus for next-generation vehicles.

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The launch of Sony Mobility comes after the consumer electronics giant unveiled a prototype sport utility vehicle (SUV) now being tested on public roads.

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The prototype, the VISION-S 02, uses the same electric vehicle platform as the earlier VISION-S 01 coupe that began testing on public roads in Europe from December 2020.

(Reporting by Shinji Kitamura; Editing by David Dolan and Himani Sarkar)