VW Tanneberger.automotiveIT

VW won't become a content provider to the connected car, Tanneberger says (Photo: automotiveIT)

HANOVER ”“ Providing well-integrated car connectivity, though a relatively new area for Volkswagen Group and other carmakers, is a core competency for Europe's largest automotive group, a senior executive said Tuesday.

Volkmar Tanneberger, executive director responsible for electrical and electronic development at VW,said better connectivity will bring more data into the car, which increases the risk of driver distraction.

"We're bringing an additional field of activity next to driving into the car and that is an additional burden on the driver," Tanneberger told the carIT Congress ”“ Mobility 3.0 here.

The VW executive said that "just hooking up a smartphone" is not the solution to solving the driver distraction issue. "We need solutions specifically made for the car," he said, adding that integration of infotainment in the car is a "core competency" of carmakers including VW.

Tanneberger explained that VW has developed a modular infotainment sytem that will, in various guises, be used by the different Volkswagen Group brands.

With more data entering the car, Volkswagen isn't looking at becoming a content provider, Tanneberger said. But he added that, in the long term, the company could consider using data provided by its cars for traffic systems or other purposes.

The VW executive was adamant that connected VW Group cars wouldn't become targets of hackers or provide other digital security risks.

"We won't make the car into an open system," Tanneberger said. "There will be a very strong firewall between the automotive and the online world.

The carIT Congress ”“ Mobility 3.0 is organized by Media Manufaktur, publisher of the various automotiveIT and carIT magazines and Web sites. This year's conference is held during the IAA truck fair.