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Toyota, KDDI to enhance ties to develop connected cars

This photo shows the Toyota Motor Corp. logo on a vehicle displayed at its Toyopet dealership in Tokyo's Shibaura area on May 9, 2018. (Kyodo)

TOKYO (Kyodo) -- Toyota Motor Corp. and KDDI Corp. said Friday they have agreed to boost their business and capital alliance in a bid to jointly develop telecommunications technologies to connect vehicles.

    Toyota will invest around 52 billion yen ($498 million) in the telecommunications company to raise its stake to 13.74 percent from 12.95 percent by Jan. 29, 2021, through a third-party allocation.

    "We will boost the telecommunication functions of cars and utilize 5G and other technologies," KDDI President Makoto Takahashi told a press conference, referring to ultrafast next-generation wireless networks.

    The two companies said they will jointly conduct research and development focused on telecommunication platforms that connect towns, homes, people and cars.

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