GM Tech Centre India showcases its global capabilities at FISITA 2018

by Autocar Pro News Desk , 03 Oct 2018

L-R: Brian McMurray, VP - Engineering & Operations at GMTC-I; Dan Nicholson, VP of Global Propulsion Systems at GM & President of FISITA; and Ms. Rashmi Urdhwareshe, director, ARAI, at FISITA 2018.

The General Motors Technical Center India (GMTC-I) today showcased its global automotive technology capability at the 37th FISITA World Automotive Congress, currently underway at the Chennai Trade Centre. GMTC-I unveiled a locally built prototype range extended electric vehicle (REEV), designed exclusively for the national REEV student competition.

Unveiling the vehicle, General Motors vice-president – Global Propulsion Systems Dan Nicholson said GMTC-I’s world-class capability makes it an important part of GM’s global engineering operations.

Engineering is a global function for General Motors and the India design centre is an integral part of it. GMTC-I houses a design studio and an engineering centre. The India centre, which contributes to a significant percentage of the GM global programs, is focused on global programs including design, analysis and development of vehicles and propulsion systems. 

“The world-class engineering capability we have at GMTC-I in Bangalore, India, is playing a significant role in GM delivering its commitment to create a world with zero crashes, zero emissions and zero congestion,” said Nicholson.

“I am extremely proud of our team of talented designers and engineers at GMTC-I who developed the Range Extended Electric Vehicle (REEV) prototype. And I’m delighted that the REEV will be the basis for an annual national competition in partnership with SAE for design and engineering students to develop their own vehicles, and drive a new wave of innovation in India.”

L-R: Brian McMurray, VP - Engineering & Operations at GMTC-I and Dan Nicholson, VP of Global Propulsion Systems at GM and president of FISITA, during the inauguration of the GM stall at FISITA.

Nicholson, who is attending FISITA 2018 as the global president of the FISITA Council, said the auto congress is a unique and powerful opportunity to bring together the leading industry and academic players, together with emerging engineering students. “India has a rich history in design, engineering and technological innovation and FISITA 2018 marks the first time the annual congress has been held in India.”

Nicholson said that as a part of GM’s global engineering operations, GMTC-I offers India’s leading designers and engineers the opportunity to work on cutting-edge global technology projects, and the potential for global careers. “As Mary Barra (GM’s CEO) has said, ‘We are seeing more change in the automotive industry in this five years, than we have seen in the last 50’, and I believe that designers and engineers will be at the forefront of this innovation,” said Nicholson.

Joining Nicholson at the REEV unveiling, Brian McMurray, GMTC-I vice-president engineering and operations, said the intellectual horsepower of GM’s designers and engineers in India is further demonstrated in the team’s 71 technical papers accepted by FISITA covering various innovation areas. 

“As well as looking to the future of personal mobility, GMTC-I plays an important role in GM’s global core business: designing and engineering world-class vehicles that inspire passion for safer tomorrow,” said McMurray.

“At FISITA, GM has deployed the virtual reality facility to provide real-life experience of car crashes and GM’s safety technology to the public.”

“As well as being a site to find out more about exciting careers at GMTC-I, our FISITA stalls also provide technology demonstrations and the opportunity to discuss automotive design, engineering and innovation with our team.”

“A new addition to the team is MITRA, an AI-powered robot helper. The robot was previously showcased at the World Entrepreneurship Summit in 2017 and is designed by Bangalore-based start-up firm Invento Robotics. The indigenous MITRA which runs on a proprietary OS, mans the GMTC-I stall at FISITA and engage with the visitors on various queries. The humanoid comes with a touchscreen on its chest and understands multiple languages that enables it to engage in smart conversations with the guest. 


REEV as an industry-academia enabler

Though from the outset it seems to be a conventional competition, REEV has rewritten the rules, driven by the needs of the Indian economy to have an energy efficient solution for automobiles. The REEV competition will explore new-age technology in automotive industry such as hybridisation, lightweighting, optimisation, range extension and fuel awareness. Through this competition GMTC-I and SAE Bangalore aim to engage the next generation of engineers making them industry-ready, think electric and also an opportunity to make personal mobility safer and more sustainable.

Also read: FISITA president Dan Nicholson writes on 'Engineers are driving a cleaner, safer future'

To participate in the SAE India REEV Student Competition click this Registration Link

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