Close to $39 million are going into the development of autonomous cars.

With the advancement of eco-friendly cars in recent years, authorities in U.K. have now decided to further support the automakers’ green push by agreeing to invest a substantial amount of money in technologies less harmful to our precious environment. The local Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy revealed this week plans to spend £100 million (about $125M) to enhance EV battery manufacturing. Some of the money will be put to good use in the construction of a brand new purpose-built battery plant.

In total, there are no less than 38 projects about to receive funding. £62M (about $77.5M) are going to be used for the development of low-emission cars, while another £31M (almost $39M) will be directed towards research in self-driving vehicles. The major investment will secure close to 2,400 jobs, which can only be good news for U.K. now that the country is about to exit the European Union as a consequence of the controversial referendum vote from last year.

Williams Advanced Engineering is among the recipients and will use the cash infusion to work on batteries, which will be adopted by a variety of car manufacturers, including Aston Martin. Speaking of which, the DBX pictured here in conceptual form is an all-electric crossover destined to hit the assembly line in 2019 at the company’s new factory in Wales.

Another British brand, Mini, has already announced its very first production EV is slated to go on sale in 2019. The company will decide later this year whether the zero-emissions model is going to be assembled at its Oxford plant.

Jaguar I-Pace Spy Photos
Jaguar I-Pace Spy Photos

While Jaguar Land Rover has expressed its interest towards making EVs in its domestic market, its first model of this kind, the forthcoming I-Pace crossover, will actually be produced in Austria by Magna Steyr.

We should also mention Nissan, which makes the Leaf electric hatchback and its batteries in Sunderland. The first generation is about to be retired to make room for an all-new model confirmed for a world reveal in September.

On a related note, Britain’s Advanced Propulsion Centre (APC) has announced BMW’s motorsports division will team up with the University of Warwick as well as with another company to work on designing, developing, and manufacturing more advanced high-density batteries within the U.K.

Source: Automotive News

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