Staff Reporter Alexa St. John spoke with Chief Technology Officer Robin Milavec about Nexteer's outlook. Here are edited excerpts.
Q: What is Nexteer's primary area of advancement as the industry changes?
A: Steer-by-wire. That mechanical connection no longer exists. It's an enabler to advanced safety features such as automatic emergency braking.
How urgent is the megatrend of autonomous driving for Nexteer?
There's been a lot of investment, r&d dollars, pumped into autonomous-vehicle development, and we were expecting that to come sooner. But I think all of the indications now are that it continues to get pushed into the future.
We're focused on making sure the r&d that we're doing supports our current products, as well as these new emerging markets that we're seeing coming. A lot of the base technology we have developed and refined over the years with advanced safety also applies.
How much of a challenge is retaining talent for all this?
It's a challenge, because the same talent we're looking for is exactly the same talent the OEMs are looking for and the industry in general.