TORONTO, Ont. — The Canadian government is investing $8 million to create two live-environment piloting sites to develop and commercialize new transportation technologies and innovative solutions.

Announced Thursday at the 2024 Canadian International AutoShow by the Hon. Filomena Tassi, federal Minister responsible for the Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario, Vance Badawey, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Transport and the Hon. Vic Fedeli, Ontario Minister of Economic Development, Job Creation and Trade and Chair of the Ontario Cabinet, the Ontario Vehicle Innovation Network (OVIN) Technology Pilot Zones will be world-class, live-testing sites and will act as a launch pad for more than 40 small- and medium-sized businesses as they pilot and commercialize more than 40 new technologies that support zero-emission (ZEV) and clean air vehicles (CAV).

The hubs will be located in Toronto and Windsor/Sarnia.

“Southern Ontario plays a vital role in driving economic growth, especially when it comes to CAV and EV-related innovation and production,” said Minister Tassi, who is also the MP for Hamilton West-Ancaster-Dundas. “OVIN’s Pilot Zones in Toronto and Windsor/Sarnia will support the testing and validating of cleaner and more efficient mobility technologies, which will help make a brighter future for us all.”

To see video of the announcement, please visit here.

The Toronto hub will focus on urban transportation needs like the required EV charging network and accessibility needs. In Windsor/Sarnia, the focus will be on cross-border efficiencies and multi-modal transportation challenges.

“OVIN’s Pilot Zones in Toronto and Windsor/Sarnia will be instrumental in supporting our automobility innovators as they test and validate their technologies,” said PS Badawey, the MP for Niagara Centre. “The Government of Canada is committed to supporting innovators as they adopt more sustainable practices for a greener Canada.”

Minister Fedeli, MPP for Nipissing, added the OVIN hubs are a key piece in ensuring Ontario is autonomous, connected and electric.

“As the automotive sector continues to evolve, it is essential that SMEs across Ontario are equipped with the tools and resources necessary to ensure their success,” he said. “The Ontario Vehicle Innovation Network’s Technology Pilot Zones will play a key role in fostering innovation, economic growth and supporting job creation, allowing companies to take their cutting-edge electric and autonomous vehicle technologies to new heights.”

As the OVIN Technology Pilot Zones will be at the forefront of automotive innovation, the AutoShow is a showcase of advancements in the automotive sector, particularly as the industry moves towards emission-free vehicles. Roughly 40 per cent of the cars, trucks and SUVs on display at the AutoShow are fully electric, plug-in hybrid or hybrid, and the AutoShow’s Electric City feature is a one-stop destination to learn everything about automotive electrification and innovation in automobility.

The exhibit is a showcase of the ecosystem that supports the new age of mobility, empowering consumers to explore their growing options in EV market, learn about new and emerging technologies and innovations and get informed about the transition to electric and alternative-fuel vehicles — including a comprehensive display from OVIN showcasing some of its projects and partnerships.

“As Canada’s automotive manufacturing and tech hub, the site of the busiest Canada-US border crossing, and the country’s largest economic centre, southern Ontario’s transportation networks are critical to the safe, efficient and clean movement of people and goods,” said Raed Kadri, Head of the Ontario Vehicle Innovation Network (OVIN). “With the support of FedDev Ontario, the OVIN Technology Pilot Zones will be pivotal to the growth of purpose-driven, Ontario-made innovation, while addressing the biggest transportation challenges facing Ontarians and driving Canada’s zero-emissions future.”

AutoShow patrons can directly experience what it is like to drive an EV at the EV Test Track, Canada’s largest indoor EV driving route. Presented in partnership with Plug’n Drive, Ivy and Castrol, the EV Test Track allows guests to choose an EV from any (or all!) of Volvo, VinFast, GMC, Cadillac, Hyundai, Genesis, Nissan, Ford, Kia, Subaru, Lexus or Toyota and take a two-lap spin around the track, with an EV expert in the passenger seat offering guidance, insight and advice.

Plug’n Drive test drives in vehicles from Volvo, VinFast, Fisker and Kia are also available on an outdoor route, with EV manufacturers Polestar and Tesla running their own test drive features from the AutoShow.

The 2024 Canadian International AutoShow is currently under way until February 25th at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre. For news and updates — and to buy tickets — please visit Stay connected with the Canadian International AutoShow on Instagram @autoshowca, Tik Tok @autoshowca, X @autoshowcanada and Facebook at /autoshowcanada.

Media accreditation to the 2024 AutoShow can be requested at 

About the Canadian International AutoShow, presented by The Toronto Star

Celebrating the automobile since 1974, the Canadian International AutoShow features more than 650,000 square feet of exhibits, displays and attractions spanning the North and South Buildings of the Metro Toronto Convention Centre. With annual attendance in excess of 350,000, the Canadian International AutoShow is not only the largest automotive expo in Canada, it is also the country’s largest consumer show. A leader in lifestyle, technology and all things automotive, it is a showcase for the latest cars, trucks, SUVs, concept cars, exotics, classics, muscle cars, electric vehicles, alternative fuel vehicles and autonomous vehicles.

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For more information, please contact:

Kalvin Reid
Director of Public Relations
Enterprise Canada
Twitter: @KalReid

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