"[Silicon Valley] is where everything is happening. This is where all the intelligence lies, so this is where Nissan needs to be," said Nissan Americas Senior Vice President of Research and Development Carla Bailo. While Nissan's corporate vice president, Takao Asami said of the move: "I think Nissan wants to create the future for mobility in autonomous driving,"
Researchers will also look for ways to connect the car with the internet, existing infrastructure, and other self-driving cars. They will additionally research what's called Human Machine Interface, so autonomous and connected cars can interact better with people.
"This lab is focused in reaching out beyond the cars to things that are beyond the automobile. It is really trying to think about the car in society and not just the car and the interior of it and I think that's the future," said MIT Media Lab Professor Alex Pentland.
Bailo hopes the move and the access it will provide to some of the world's most innovative minds will help Nissan take a commanding position in autonomous and piloted driving technology. "Maybe we will have a Jetsons era. We will see," he said.