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GREAT Exhibitors (Part 2)

Sep 3, 2019

Which British exhibitors will be joining the IAA in Hall 5 (D06) in Frankfurt at the UK pavilion? Meet the second batch of five that round out the British companies present!

McLaren Applied Technologies

Drawing on a 30-year heritage leading the digital transformation of motorsport through electronics and data systems, McLaren Applied Technologies develops transformative products and solutions that harness its expertise in electrification, telematics control and analytics, and virtual product development.

In the field of automotive, we operate at the forefront of technology to produce systems that are high performance, lightweight and assured to automotive standards.

How does your product contribute to changing/advancing the future of mobility?

McLaren Applied Technologies has developed a motor inverter, suitable for the automotive market, based on silicon carbide technology. This technology, coupled with McLaren’s forward-thinking approach to developing state-of-the-art products, has resulted in a motor inverter with a power density of over 50 kW/kg which meets the Advanced Propulsion Centre technology target for 2035.

What are the greatest challenges that your company currently faces?

Supply chain stability in power electronics is a major challenge for McLaren Applied Technologies. We rely on using the latest available technology, but the supply chain can struggle to keep up with the rate of change required to exploit this new technology to its fullest.

How important is international collaboration for your services / products?

Developing cutting-edge solutions requires a high-level of collaboration across our supply chain and product partner network – much of which is based internationally – to ensure our products are fully optimised. Furthermore, the global reach of the McLaren brand ensures a highly diverse workforce, that has a breadth of expertise and experience, with between 50 and 60 nationalities represented across the McLaren Group.

Swifty Scooters

Founded in 2011, Swifty Scooters received critical acclaim for their first innovative product, SwiftyONE, arguably the world’s first premium foldable kick-scooter for adults. Born from the need for a safe, fun and sustainable way to travel in the city, Swifty Scooters designs premium quality kick scooters for a safe and fun way to commute. Swifty offers both “active” and electric-powered scooters, providing a micro-mobility solution that grants freedom from fossil fuels and liberation from rush-hour tailbacks. 

Global Design Solutions (GDS)

Global Design Solutions (GDS) design and manufacture perfect LED lighting and control products to the automotive, architectural and entertainment industries.

At the helm of innovative LED manufacturing in the UK since 2004, GDS pioneer new technologies and supply both products and services to landmark venues and high-profile architectural spaces worldwide. Now specialising in LED colour matching technology, GDS engineer and manufacture modular high output lighting systems for the automotive industry, guaranteeing perfect quality light for controlled R&D environments and the automotive supply chain.

The GDS Group has offices in both the UK and Korea and export to 40 countries, with over 50 highly skilled employees, specialising in product design, engineering, lighting design and manufacturing.

A few questions for GDS Group Co-Founder, Richard Cuthbert: 

How does your product contribute to changing/advancing the future of mobility?

Our work with the DF System is enhancing the ability to use materials such as plastics and alloys in far more diverse applications. We are able to consistently and accurately improve the ability for supply chain partners to implement these new materials in their manufacturing processes which is a true game changer for the industry. By transferring our LED innovation from the other lighting sectors we are successfully established in, GDS are able to widen the scope and potential for colour matching in the automotive industry.

What are the greatest challenges that your company currently faces?

The greatest challenge at the moment as a company is the current uncertainty behind our relationship with Europe and export tariffs. It can be challenging to begin the process of making connections as a business in a new market sector and it is a great asset for us to be working with DIT to open those doors. As GDS start to explore and expand in the automotive sector it is important we realise there are different priorities with regard to product operation, requirements and standards that we need to consider.

How important is international collaboration for your services / products?

It is critically important for GDS to collaborate internationally. Around 40% of our business is export and within our next 5 year strategy plan, export will be a considerable factor in us increasing our turnover. With that comes challenges regarding product testing standards and specifically country standards, where the support of DIT is invaluable. You have to make sure you are managing the focus of your international trade to ensure we keep our overheads as low as we can.

Gordon Murray Design

Gordon Murray Design is a visionary design and engineering company with its headquarters in Shalford in Surrey. It was established in 2007 with a focus on developing an innovative and disruptive manufacturing technology trademarked iStream®, and has since built a global reputation as one of the finest automotive design teams in the world.

The company’s unique approach and truly creative thinking enables Gordon Murray Design to deliver complete car programmes in a highly efficient and innovative way from concept and design, through to prototype and development for production.

Gordon Murray Design has entered a technology licencing agreement with Transcal Limited to manufacture the iStream® lightweight automotive seat. The new agreement will cover the current seat design, codenamed IS-001. This innovative unit boasts a significant 30% weight saving when compared to a conventional modern seat.

The IS-001 seat licensed by Transcal, a leading automotive supplier of innovative interiors since 1980, will be the world’s first implementation of the iStream lightweight seat. Gordon Murray Design is exploring further automotive and non-automotive designs and applications for the seat. 

Professor Gordon Murray CBE, Chairman of Gordon Murray Design, said: “We welcome the opportunity to work with Transcal, a business that shares our focus on a more efficient future for the automotive sector and pushing boundaries at every opportunity. The iStream lightweight automotive seat represents a seismic shift in this sector – its innovative construction helps to deliver both economic and environmental benefits.”

The iStream lightweight seat will be on display at the IAA to test for yourself!


AppyWay started out as AppyParking, an app made to solve the frustration of finding a parking space. By showing drivers what parking was available where, the company did their bit to ease the four days a year people spend, on average, hunting out spaces. Since the creation of this app required a large amount of non-existing quality data sets, the team at AppyWay curated London's largest digital parking database. From this new ideas developed. Today, AppyWay offer the most digitally advanced platform of accurate, standardised data, APIs and tools for smart kerbside management in the world. They help Local Authorities and businesses all over the country unlock the power of their kerbs, to the benefit of residents, drivers, high streets and councils.

Some questions for Dan Hubert, CEO & Founder of AppyWay:

How does your product contribute to changing/advancing the future of mobility?

If we, meaning towns, cities, countries, are to realise the benefits of intelligent mobility you have to first start by empowering local and city authorities with the right tools and solutions. They are the custodians of the infrastructure and mobility operators need to be effectively managed so that their services compliment and support public transport and policy objectives.

Our platform of kerbside management solutions, data, APIs and integrations actually represents what we like to call a 'future of mobility' conduit between the public and private sectors.  By empowering city authorities with cloud-based kerbside management tools, they are able to digitise their infrastructure and both enable and allow them to manage intelligent mobility services. Access to standardised and authoritative kerbside restriction data is a key feature, and our traffic order tool Mapper is the first in the UK to produce and make available data in the Alliance of Parking Data Standards format. 

What are the greatest challenges that your company currently faces?

There are a few things that could certainly be easier for us, that's for certain. We're building a complex platform that ultimately provides a eco-system of mobility data, and everybody in our space works at different speeds and are at different points in their mobility journey. So some authorities across the UK and Europe are much farther down the road, and our solutions have tremendous appeal as they have a long-term vision for their transportation network. However, for many authorities, the fiscal reality they faced with requires more pragmatic solutions to help rejuvenate high streets.  Thankfully, we have solutions for both ends of the spectrum, but it does mean we're developing broad capabilities across multiple use-cases, which requires capacity and investment.

How important is international collaboration for your services / products?

Collaboration is essential – it can't be underestimated how important it is.  The promise of the huge societal and environmental benefits intelligent mobility can bring, can only be realised via standardised data protocols being adopted internationally and with consistent processes being developed and used.  It's ultimately about defining a shared vision for what we want smart cities to look like and how we need them to work best for their citizens.  We all want cleaner, more accessible and more liveable cities – we just need to agree on how we get there together.

„It's ultimately about defining a shared vision for what we want smart cities to look like and how we need them to work best for their citizens.  We all want cleaner, more accessible and more liveable cities – we just need to agree on how we get there together.“

Dan Hubert, CEO & Founder of AppyWay


Oxbotica was founded in 2014 by Oxford professors Paul Newman and Ingmar Posner. Since then, Oxbotica has grown from a start-up through to one of the world’s leading autonomous driving software companies. Oxbotica builds software for real-world application, drawing on principles of physics, robotics, maths, and AI. Their full suite of Universal Autonomy software is fully modular, has low compute power requirements and uses best in class laser vision and radar for localisation and perception for redundancy and safety purposes.

Paul Newman, Founder & CTO of Oxbotica, on the 4 Ws of Universal Autonomy: What, Why, When and Where:

What is universal autonomy?
If a vehicle is autonomous, it knows where it is, what’s around it and what it should do. Universal autonomy means doing that in all places, at all times, for all vehicles.

From the beginning, universal autonomy was always our goal. We never set out to restrict ourselves to a specific domain – we wanted to build software that could enable any vehicle to operate unassisted by human beings, anywhere, anytime.

Autonomy is one of the toughest problems of our times. Though it’s tempting to go for a specialised approach that focuses on just one domain, we think that means building in unnecessary and expensive limitations. Imagine you’re building a processor: why would you develop a processor that could only work inside one specific device, like a printer, when you could build one for general-purpose computing? That would be daft. The same applies to autonomy software.  

There is a common skillset across all types of driving in all places. Driving a mining truck or a shuttle in an airport does require some specialist domain knowledge around rights of way and the rules of the road. However, it is the fundamental underlying technology competency set – the where, the what and the how – that is the common factor. If we ourselves drive universally, then surely the technology behind our vehicles should also be universal? That’s not to say it’s easy, though. Our advantage is our heritage – we have been working on the fundamentals  of autonomy since 1996 across different industries and locations. The how of universal autonomy is a complicated business that transcends simple explanations. Yet, the concept of universal autonomy is simplicity itself.

Why do we need universal autonomy?
That’s easy to answer. Every industry is set to benefit from the spoils that autonomy offers, but not always in the same way or mix. Some see the economic benefit – doing things faster at less cost and for longer. Others see safety and superhuman precision as the key benefits. Many industries will be born because of it. Across the board, vehicles will do more. In fact, we have made “Let all vehicles do more” our rallying call.

But here is the thing – if we can supercharge vehicles’ abilities across multiple sectors with a common product, and the use of that product in each domain improves the product day-to-day, then there is universal gain. Something extraordinary is going to happen.

When will universal autonomy be deployable?
Universal autonomy is ready to deploy now. Oxbotica have the core technology that allows us to deploy autonomy at any time, in any environment. Over the past five years, we’ve deployed our software with our industry partners, in taxis, to give one example, but also in mines, forests, warehouses, ports and airports. Different vehicles, different places, different markets, but the same code.

Each sector will have its own rewards and challenges as it adopts or is transformed by autonomy. These, of course, have a part to play in timing. Regulators and insurers are both enablers and catalysts; they have an important role to play as partner stakeholders in this journey. Certainly, regulators in the UK have been faultless in their support and strategy over these past five years. We see the insurance industry as a critical component in the delivery of universal autonomy. We partnered four years ago with AXA XL to develop the insurance axis of universal autonomy. Specifically, we wanted to answer how it can be used to reduce risk and bring insured autonomy to many sectors at once, universally.

Where will universal autonomy be deployed?
Universal autonomy has the potential to disrupt, lift and energise innumerable markets worldwide. The possibilities are limitless. But you have to start somewhere. As a business, we’ve chosen exactly how to sequence our options and what our deployment priorities are.

Working with our industry partners, we are prioritising the markets where we can offer immediate value in terms of safety and efficiency with our proven technology. The beauty of it all is that our software continually learns. Developing universal autonomy means that the learnings our technology picks up from a deployment in one market can be applied to all other markets where the software operates. As we work in our immediate markets, we are continually strengthening our technical offering for our future markets.

There is simply no reason why every vehicle shouldn’t be autonomous. All vehicles should do more, universally. That’s universal autonomy – and we make it.

About DIT

The UK’s Department for International Trade (DIT) helps businesses export, drives inward and outward investment, negotiates market access and trade deals, and champions free trade.