Toyota has announced plans to create a new company which will develop software for self-driving cars.

The Japanese automotive giant will set up TRI-AD (Toyota Research Institute-Advanced Development), in partnership with automotive manufacturers Aisin Seiki and Denso Corporation.

Toyota has said it will hold further discussions and aims to conclude a joint development contract, with plans to invest more than 300 billion yen (£2 billion) into the business.

“Building production-quality software is a critical success factor for Toyota’s automated driving program,” said Dr. Kuffner, Toyota Research Institute’s chief technology officer and future TRI-AD CEO.

“This company’s mission is to accelerate software development in a more effective and disruptive way, by augmenting the Toyota Group’s capability through the hiring of world-class software engineers. We will recruit globally, and I am thrilled to lead this effort.”

The new company is targeting a staff of approximately 1,000 English speaking employees.

Toyota’s research and development arm, Toyota Research Institute, Inc, was set up in North America in 2016 to conduct research in the areas of artificial intelligence, automated driving, and robotics.  

"Toyota is known for the quality and efficiency of the Toyota Production System (TPS). I have no doubt that we can translate the fundamental ideas of TPS from the production of hardware to the production of software, and dramatically enhance Toyota’s software capabilities,” said Dr. Gill Pratt, TMC Fellow, TRI CEO and Chairman of the new TRI-AD Board of Directors.

“That’s what TRI has been working for, and that’s what the new company will push even further.”