Valeo says applications for automobiles should not become "the Nokia of the next decade" as suppliers increasingly evaluate the use of mobile phone technology for cars.

The French component producer made its comments at last week's European automotive supplier body, CLEPA's Aftermarket Conference in Brussels, using the cautionary tale of the once-mighty Finnish mobile company, which was bought by Microsoft but whose influence subsequently plummeted.

"The mobile phone - you don't use it any longer to [make] a call," Valeo group innovation and scientific development VP Guillaume Devauchelle, said to the 200 plus delegates at CLEPA's Belgian conference.

"You use hundreds of apps thanks to Google - the automobile will become a smart car just because a driver will not be any longer in charge 100% of the time.

"It is scary how to deal with thousands of opportunities, How not to become the Nokia of the next decade? When you buy a car, the car is fixed. You can upgrade but it is very limited. My belief is in the very near future you will not buy a fixed car, but one which will adapt to itself.

"Have a look at Tesla. Tesla has introduced five software releases for its models. There is no legacy so they can do what they want."

Devauchelle noted "every OEM" was racing to put prototypes on the road to test autonomous driving, which could also include connected vehicles and which could address ever-growing issues surrounding city congestion.

"Valeo has demonstrated in most of the European cities facing huge traffic jams," he said. "I have no clues regarding the future. Nobody knows, but the winner will have good experience.

"Valeo is open to partner with everyone because a good idea might not come from our team."

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