One of China’s premier automotive brands has revealed it will integrate a ChatGPT-like bot into some of its product line up.
Great Wall Motors (GWM), the country’s most successful SUV manufacturer, released a statement in early August announcing it had established a partnership with ‘Ernie Bot’ developer and search engine giant, Baidu, as the firm seeks to make its offering more connected and intelligent.
GWM has tested the large language model’s features in its current production line up, adding that several Ernie Bot features will be incorporated into GWM’s commercial offering, according to the statement.
Ernie Bot (the Enhanced Representation through Knowledge Integration) is an AI chatbot based on Ernie 3.0 Titan, a large language model Baidu has had under development since 2019.
It is capable of processing massive amounts of data ‘scrape’ or harvested off the internet, either manually or by bots and web crawlers. Ernie Bot and other chatbots like it generate content by receiving input and repeatedly attempting to create or predict the next token.
In June, Baidu claimed its most updated chatbot, Ernie 3.5, surpassed ChatGPT 3.5 and even outperformed the more sophisticated ChatGPT 4.0 in terms of its Chinese language capabilities.
The tech behemoth is aggressively promoting the model and recently announced it would open a more than $139 million venture fund to invest in local AI startups.
Successful early testing meant GWM was one step closer to making chatbot-integrated cars available to their customers, said Cao Hua, a partner at the Shanghai-based private equity firm, Unity Asset Management. Ernie Bot’s usage would increase significantly with the recent collaboration, he added.
GWM has not revealed which of its current or future line up will be integrated with Ernie Bot and has also remained tight-lipped on a possible launch date.
Baidu confirmed it was in advanced talks with other automotive brands, including the Geely-owned joint ventures, Smart and Lynk, to outfit future products with the chatbot. Naturally, Baidu’s electric vehicle subsidiary, Jidu, will be sold with Ernie Bot functionality.
It should be noted that no Jidu EVs have rolled off assembly lines, with production scheduled to commence later this year, according to the South China Morning Post.