General Motors & Red Hat to Develop Linux-Based Ultifi Vehicle Operating System for 2023 Launch

American legacy automaker General Motors is collaborating with Red Hat Inc. to develop a new Linux-based architecture to expand on the carmaker’s Ultifi end-to-end software platform. As new vehicles shift from software-enabled to software-defined, the GM and Red Hat partnership is fast-tracking the development and expansion of new software-defined features more responsibly, more reliably, and at a fraction of the time.

“General Motors is now a platform company. Working with Red Hat is a critical element in advancing our Ultifi software development,” said Scott Miller, GM vice president, Software-Defined Vehicle and Operating System. “Incorporating the company’s expertise in open source solutions and enterprise networks will pay dividends as we aim to provide the most developer-friendly software platform in the industry.”

Open-Source Innovation

According to GM’s press release, the integrated Linux software will support infotainment, advanced driver assistance systems, body control, and connectivity. Integrating the Red Hat In-Vehicle operating system into Ultifi is expected to achieve:

  • New services, business models, and revenue streams.
  • A certification template for safety systems and related applications.
  • Improved development cycles while accelerating the time-to-market.
  • Cost reduction from consolidation and reuse of software on a common platform.

Seamless Updates

With the increasing complexity of in-vehicle software systems requiring higher levels of cybersecurity protection and stringent certifications, GM and Red Hat want to make updates more straightforward and frequent. “By collaborating with GM on the Red Hat In-Vehicle Operating System, we intend to bring the era of open source to the automotive world, benefitting automakers, ecosystem partners, and consumers,” said Francis Chow, Red Hat vice president and general manager. “The time to innovate is now.”

GM further adds that Red Hat will contribute to Ultifi’s launch in 2023. The system promises “more frequent and seamless delivery of software-defined features, apps, and services to customers over the air” via a more flexible platform that separates application software from hardware. Furthermore, having a more flexible Linux-based architecture will enable Ultifi to be universally usable by GM developers and suppliers.

GM said authorized third-party developers who meet strict security, safety, and privacy standards could directly access and innovate on Ultifi to benefit GM vehicle owners. “With Red Hat’s operating system as a core enabler of Ultifi’s capabilities, the opportunity for innovation becomes limitless,” Miller said.