Michigan leans on manufacturing history in bid to become a hub for autonomous vehicles

It was the latest in a string of announcements aimed at reinforcing the narrative Michigan economic leaders have been pushing for years — that Michigan’s manufacturing history will give it a leg up in becoming a center for autonomous and connected vehicles.

“Michigan is a good location if you’re looking for people with regular assembly skills, as well as skilled tradesman, and you know electrical and mechanical engineers,” Gartner autonomous vehicle analyst Michael Ramsey told VentureBeat in a phone interview…

One advantage that Michigan has is its relatively low cost of living. Silicon Valley is becoming increasingly expensive — spurring engineers and technical talent to move elsewhere — which could encourage Ford and GM to invest more in Michigan. For now, however, with Silicon Valley’s reputation as the cutting-edge center for technology and Pittsburgh’s reputation for producing top talent out of Carnegie Mellon, automakers are likely going to continue to hedge their bets and spread out their R&D investments between those cities.