BMW, Mercedes, Deutsche Telekom and Ericsson have urged the European Commission to back a technology for connected cars they believe would help to speed up the rollout of 5G mobile networks across the bloc. The European Union prepares to draw up rules to apply to connected cars, an industry worth billions of dollars in the next decade. The plans are expected to be issued by the end of 2018.

A technology named C-V2X, which enables cars to communicate via cellular networks to other connected devices, is a better option than a rival wifi-based technology known as ITS-G5, the companies said. They argue that C-V2X would allow EU carmakers to better compete in a global market.

But according to Reuters, ITS-G5 would lock carmakers into a technology “which, despite its name, has no relationship to 5G technology and certainly no evolutionary path toward compatibility with 5G”, they said in a letter to Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker and other commissioners seen by Reuters.

“This places Europe at an economic disadvantage compared with other regions of the world including China and the United States, where C-V2X is emerging as a strong technology candidate for C-ITS (Cooperative Intelligent Transport Systems),” the companies said.

Other companies interested in ITS-G5 are: Ford, Huawei, Intel, Qualcomm, Nokia, SAIC Motor, Samsung, Savari, PSA Groupe, Telefonica and Vodafone.