To understand why cars are becoming more like four-wheeled computers, take a drive down U.S. Highway 101 south of San Francisco.
The traffic-choked 25-mile stretch from Belmont to San Jose has historically been known for software and semiconductors, not sedans. But the world’s nine largest automakers, by revenue, and three largest auto suppliers now have offices and research labs along this drag, including Mercedes-Benz, BMW, Bosch, Delphi, Ford, Honda, Nissan and Volkswagen. Tesla Motors has its headquarters and its assembly plant in the region.
Some of these offices have just a handful of employees and are meant more for recruiting and scouting than for developing new products. Nevertheless, they send a clear message: Computing power is becoming nearly as important as horsepower.
Use this interactive guide to Silicon Valley’s auto industry corridor to find out who’s here and what they’re working on.