01 Overview
02 Talent Pipeline
03 Industry Ecosystem
04 Labor Analysis
05 Operating Cost Analysis
06 Quality of Life

Driving the Future in

Greater Phoenix

The cutting edge of autonomous vehicle research and development

Autonomous vehicles are changing the world we live in, and Greater Phoenix is leading the way in supporting the development and testing of this transformative technology.

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Cost Analysis


Greater Phoenix is exceptionally positioned to absorb both new-to-market companies and expansion of the value chain in the region for businesses looking to start or relocate. Between the talent pipeline, low operating costs, and industry ecosystem, Greater Phoenix is the perfect location for Autonomous Vehicles research and development.


Value Proposition


Greater Phoenix offers shorter commute times than peer markets, more than 300 days of sunshine annually, and fewer days with significant weather interruptions.


Because of the gridded road system, the test environment for autonomous vehicles is more forgiving. The city is dedicated to continued investment in street infrastructure and warm temperatures eliminate freeze and thaw potholes.

Supply Chain

Greater Phoenix offers a robust ecosystem with a significant presence from advanced technology companies. The region also has a longstanding automotive R&D infrastructure with many major automakers.

Regulatory Environment

Greater Phoenix offers a pro-business regulatory environment that encourages autonomous vehicle development. Limited reporting and permitting means more time for testing on the roads.Phoe

Competitive Operating Costs

Greater Phoenix offers lower annual operating costs than Detroit and San Jose with cheaper real estate and benefit costs compared to peer markets.


Talent Pipeline

Greater Phoenix boasts competitive, non-distance program completions at colleges and universities in concentrations related to autonomous vehicles research and development.


Greater Phoenix Talent Pipeline

Below are the total number of non-distance program completions at colleges and universities in Greater Phoenix with degree programs relevant to the development of autonomous vehicles. The region produced over 2,500 graduates in these fields during the 2015 to 2016 school year. The region’s universities are committed to supplying the workforce needed to enable companies to scale in the region. Comparison data for peer markets has been provided below.

Autonomous Vehicles Ecosystem


Industry Ecosystem

Autonomous Vehicles Supply Chain

Greater Phoenix is home to every piece of the autonomous vehicle supply chain. The companies below represent a sample of the firms currently operating in the region.

Greater Phoenix is home to every piece of the autonomous vehicle supply chain. The companies below represent a sample of the firms currently operating in the region.Autonomous Vehicles

Local Innovation

Autonomous R&D in Greater Phoenix

Arizona is a leading state for cutting-edge research and the development of autonomous vehicles. Listed below are the firms developing autonomous technologies in Greater Phoenix.


Labor Analysis

Greater Phoenix has a robust supply of human capital at an affordable cost. Below is a table of median wages across peer markets for autonomous vehicle occupations.


Labor Pool

The table below shows employment for the following occupations in the selected metros.

Occupation Phoenix Detroit Pittsburgh San Jose
Computer and Information Systems Managers 5,594 4,968 2,718 14,065
Computer Systems Analysts 12,857 10,435 5,423 15,672
Computer Programmers 3,625 20,60 2,193 6,223
Software Developers, Applications 12,108 12,524 7,221 43,275
Software Developers, Systems Software 8,111 7,445 1,467 28,694
Network and Computer Systems Administrators 5,752 4,753 2,821 6,758
Computer Network Architects 2,844 1,758 1,494 4,121
Computer Hardware Engineers 570 1,004 225 11,955
Electrical Engineers 2,666 6,555 1,927 6,162
Electronics Engineers, Except Computer 4,173 1,618 888 6,113
Mechanical Engineers 2,554 29,684 3,262 3,858
Electrical and Electronics Engineering Technicians 2,119 1,664 1,467 6,777
Mechanical Engineering Technicians 482 2,817 334 609
Electrical and Electronic Equipment Assemblers 4,034 3,378 2,840 8,936
Total: 67,490 90,665 34,282 163,220

Operating Cost Analysis

Greater Phoenix has competitive operating costs for autonomous vehicles research and development businesses starting or relocating operations compared to other top markets. Despite having one of the largest talent pools among peer markets, the region has one of the lowest employee payroll costs, while also boasting affordable real estate payments.

The Annual Business Operating Cost Analysis has been prepared using the following parameters as an estimate for autonomous vehicle research & development operations in competitor markets. Component and custom analyses to match your company’s operations can be provided upon request.


  • $5,000,000 personal property investment
  • 50,000 square foot warehouse, Lease
  • Utilities (per month): Included in Lease
  • 35 jobs (Bureau of Labor Statistics equivalent occupations)
Occupations Employment
Software Developers, Applications 10
Mechanical Engineer 5
Computer Hardware Engineers 5
Software Developers, Systems Software 5
Electrical and Electronics Engineering Tech 3
Electrical Engineers 2
Computer Programmers 2
Network and Computer Systems Administrators 1
Computer and Information Systems Managers 1
General and Operations Managers 1
Total Work Force: 35

Quality Of Life

Greater Phoenix is home to hundreds of parks and hundreds of miles of hiking, biking and walking trails.



Parks & Recreation


The Greater Phoenix region is home to the largest municipal park in the United States, South Mountain Park. South Mountain Park covers more than 16,000 acres. Other large parks in the region include the White Tank Mountain Regional Park, Camelback Mountain, Piestewa Peak and the Superstition Mountains. Notable walking trails in the region include the canal system, Tempe Town Lake, the Greenbelt and Papago Park.

Cost of Living

Greater Phoenix provides the right combination of affordability, size, and scalability. Compared to California metros, Greater Phoenix is less expensive across all major expenses.

Autonomous Vehicles

Companies in Greater Phoenix

  • Toyota
  • Lexus
  • Ford
  • Volvo
  • Nuro
  • Intel
  • Olli
  • Waymo
  • Volkswagen
  • Nissan
  • Cruise
  • Infiniti

Want to see a full list of companies in Greater Phoenix? Download the complete report.

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