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Concrete results from European automotive research shown at Innovation Demonstration Day


16 Jun 2016


Innovation & Enterprise

14 June - Commissioner Günther Oettinger, several Members of the European Parliament, and European Commission officials had the opportunity to experience innovations deployed by the automotive sector at the “Innovation Demonstration Day” in Brussels. The event focused on results from European projects funded by FP7 and Horizon 2020 research programmes: it gave concrete evidence of the usefulness of collaborative research made at European level, by showing how research results make their way into the market, within components and systems used by vehicles produced today in Europe.

Stephan Neugebauer, Chairman of ERTRAC, stressed the importance of collaboration to address the major trends of transport such as decarbonisation, connectivity and automation. Different stakeholders and industries need to work together to bring innovation faster into the market. For example, public-private partnerships should deploy the infrastructures necessary to charge electric vehicles. And to enable further functions of automated driving, cooperation between the automotive and telecommunication industries is required. 

The event was co-organised with EUCAR and hosted at the Toyota facilities in Zaventem. It included an exhibition made of results from European funded projects, and a number of dynamic demonstrations, which offered to EU institutions officials the chance to experience innovation. Automotive manufacturers, suppliers and research centres contributed by bringing components and vehicles. Demonstrators included alternative powertrains (hybrids, battery and fuel cell electric vehicles) and safety and automation systems, such as automated emergency braking in front of a pedestrian, traffic jam assistant, and automated parking. In addition to innovation in passenger cars, trucks were present as well with showcase of platooning and of multi-modal logistics solutions.

Through this event, ERTRAC wanted to highlight the concrete results brought by the European research programme. Euros invested in collaborative R&D help to accelerate the path of innovative ideas into development and market introduction. By having R&D collaboration across Europe, harmonisation and common standards can also be achieved quicker. Benefits of innovation, for road safety, for decarbonisation and emissions reduction, and for the transport system overall efficiency, will be delivered faster thanks to this European collaboration.