The Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS)
is to invest up to £20 million* in collaborative R&D projects and feasibility studies (delivered by Innovate UK on behalf of BIS) to stimulate developments in autonomous vehicles and connected transport systems.
* Note funding is only guaranteed for the 2015–16 financial year (ending 31 March 2016) and further funding is subject to decisions in the Government's Comprehensive Spending Review.
Building on the government's ‘Introducing driverless cars to UK roads' collaborative research initiative, this competition aims to encourage development of connected and autonomous vehicles, focusing on three themes – connectivity, autonomy and customer interaction – along with catalysing new business models.
Proposals must be led by a business and be collaborative. We are primarily seeking to fund collaborative research and development (industrial research). Small business partners could receive up to 70% of their eligible project costs, medium-sized businesses 60% and large businesses 50%.
We welcome consortia led by any sized company and particularly encourage proposals from medium-sized companies. Research organisations may participate as collaborators in a consortium but business partners must incur at least 70% of the total eligible project costs. We expect collaborative R&D projects to range in size from total costs of £1 million to £5 million. We encourage overseas-based partners to participate in consortia by conducting their R&D in the UK.
Up to £2.5 million of the total funding will be available for smaller-scale feasibility studies. These are open to companies working alone or collaboratively. Small businesses could receive up to 70% of their eligible project costs, medium-sized businesses 60% and large businesses 50%. We expect feasibility studies to range in size from £50,000 to £250,000.
The competition opens for both types of project application on 20 July 2015. The deadline for applications is at noon on 30 September 2015.
There will be a briefing in London for potential applicants on 4 August 2015.
Supporting documents & links
We are seeking proposals that fall into one or more of the following thematic areas for both collaborative R&D and feasibility studies:
Out of scope
In this competition we are not funding projects covering other modes of transport outside the automotive space. However, connected infrastructure and supporting systems and services are within scope.
20 July 2015
4 August 2015
noon 23 September 2015
Deadline for receipt of applications
noon 30 September 2015