Chinese EV maker Nio opened its Smart Driving Technology Centre in Schönefeld near Berlin this week.

It is the first center of its kind outside of China, which the firm says is proof of its international footprint and underlines the growing important of Berlin and the surrounding area as an important automotive cluster.

It follows the opening of its Innovation Center in Berlin last year which the firm says will work closely to develop Nio technologies for use in Europe. 

Hui Zhang, Group Vice President, NIO, said: “Through NIO’s resilience and innovative spirit, we are poised to explore the big potential to complete our global development network and to provide tailo r-made user-favourable tech-solutions from Europe for Europe.”     

The Smart Driving Technology Center team is led by Mirko Reuter, NIO’s Senior Director AD. The team  develops and validates all its vehicle-specific systems in Schönefeld, with a focus on the local user needs.

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Mr Reuter said: “The great combination of automotive and software competences around Berlin and the good infrastructure of Brandenburg has enabled the Smart Driving Technology Center to become NIO’s future hub for all smart and digital development in Europe.”                               

Software for Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS) are one Nio’s in-house developed core competencies Its work is guided by the wishes of users, which, like the regulatory requirements for assisted driving, have different requirements in Europe than in China.

These differing requirements led to the firm creating engineering teams in the heart of the regions where the vehicles are being used.