Volkswagen group research and robot and automation specialist Kuka have agreed joint development of robot-based technology following the signing of a new cooperation contract.

The paperwork was signed off by VW AG CEO Matthias Mueller, R&D chief Ulrich Eichhorn and Kuka CEO Till Reuter.

Autonomous automobiles and service robots will be analysed by the partnership.

"We are working intensively on structuring the mobility of tomorrow. This is not simply about innovative vehicle concepts but encompasses completely new requirements in the service sector," said Mueller.

One aim is robot-based innovations for all-electric and autonomous automobiles.

"In future, robots will support humans in many routine tasks. And everyday life in future will be inconceivable without autonomous driving. We will work together on innovative concepts in order to shape this future," said Reuter.

An existing joint research project is considering collaboration between human and robot and involves a robot independently connecting up the vehicle with a charging station.