Message from the EUCAR Chairman 2017

EUCAR Chairman 2017Europe needs to continue striving for a more sustainable and competitive economy in order to secure a prosperous future for all Europeans. It is EUCAR’s ambition to contribute to this endeavour as we seek to address societal challenges by bringing innovative solutions to the market.

Our main aim is to strengthen the competitiveness of the European automotive industry. However, EUCAR’s goals do go hand in hand with society’s demand for smarter and safer vehicles, clean and energy-efficient propulsion systems, efficient freight transport and a competitive manufacturing sector. EUCAR’s research and innovation projects thus directly contribute to central EU priorities that are important to the European citizens. To give you some examples:

  • We actively contribute to the objectives of the Road Transport Strategy for Europe, which seeks to make road transport safer, more efficient and cleaner.
  • The automotive sector, directly and indirectly, employs 12 million Europeans, making us a key player in the European Commission’s plans that focus on creating jobs, growth and investment.
  • Given the fact that the automotive manufacturers are the largest private investors in R&D in Europe, the automotive sector makes a sizeable contribution to the Europe 2020 strategy which seeks to increase investments in research and innovation to 3% of the EU’s GDP.

Besides promoting innovation in the European automotive industry, EUCAR also supports the EU by providing information that facilitates the development of future European research strategies. For instance, we identify key challenges in the field of mobility and seek to address those by developing research and innovation roadmaps for Europe. Instead of taking the perspective of a single member state, we approach the European Union as a whole. Our objective is to tackle key challenges on a pan-European level – EUCAR thinks Europe!

With EUCAR‘s collaborative research projects we strive to serve the citizens of Europe. For instance, we have projects to develop even safer vehicles; we are securing the privacy of drivers and passengers, we are securing connected vehicles against manipulations and cyber threats; we provide a solid knowledgebase for the safe introduction of automated driving. In addition, our projects help to create new services, business models and products creating the jobs of tomorrow.

With the year 2020 approaching, Horizon 2020, the 8th European Framework Programme for research and innovation is approaching its final phase. And as future transport solutions are becoming more complex, pre-competitive collaborative research is even more important. Therefore, as specific goals for 2017 we are strengthening our organisation to support our experts groups even better, we will intensify our communication on “success stories” within automotive R&D and initiate a work to provide constructive input to a coming 9th Framework Programme.

I am proud to be part of EUCAR. Through our office in Brussels and our projects you can become part of a creative and dynamic ecosystem in the area of precompetitive collaborative research. We appreciate and value different views and perspectives, and are always ready to engage in an open dialogue on how to enable clean, safe and sustainable transport in the best possible way. In 2017, we are more committed than ever to actively contribute to on-going discussions on how research and development can deliver a prosperous, sustainable and competitive European economy.

Everybody’s input is welcome, please feel free to contact EUCAR at eucar@eucar.be.

Yours sincerely,
Urban Wass

EUCAR Chairman 2017,
Senior Vice President, Research & Innovation Policy, Volvo Group.