As automated vehicles slowly populate selected urban areas, the question persists: Who will repair and maintain these robotic and technological marvels?
"It's not something that immediately comes to mind when we think about all the research and development that comes with automated driving," says Kay Stepper, vice president of driver assistance systems and automated driving at Robert Bosch.
As a first mover in automated vehicle technology, Bosch is addressing a need that might be five or 10 years from reaching critical mass. But automakers, dealers, industry groups and academics agree that a significant gap exists in education and marketing of careers for automated vehicle service technicians.
For the past 18 months at Stepper's direction, Bosch has opened its automated vehicle testing labs in Plymouth, Mich., to electronics students from Schoolcraft College in nearby Livonia.