Aptiv calls its new system Smart Vehicle Architecture and plans to properly introduce the system as CES 2020 in Las Vegas. Hardware and software in most vehicles currently work together inside a single box. However, with SVA, the single box system will be tossed out and instead multiple boxes, using cloud servers as its hardware, will share the several actions around the car to add redundancy, lower costs, and allow system flexibility. The software within the system would be updated through over-the-air updates.
“Every feature in a vehicle has a box that has dedicated compute to it. Each of those has dedicated compute hardware that does not share across any other, which is incredibly inefficient,” explained Glen De Vos, Aptiv Senior Vice President and Chief Technology Officer during a recent media briefing. “As a result, you want this compute to be able to share tasks across the various domains.”
The problem that Aptiv hopes to resolve with SVA is the amount of software and data needed for the technology being put into newer cars especially as more cars add driver assist systems and autonomous features.
“Thinking about architecture of a vehicle, the combination of hardware and software, what we’re seeing now is that growth of software content and associated processing and compute is really breaking the current vehicle architecture,” said De Vos.
De Vos believes that level 2 autonomous systems, which assumes a driver will have some driving functions within a car, will become the "baseline" by 2025 and become cheaper. However, he believes that once autonomous technology reaches level 3, in which the vehicle will mostly be in control, the costs will spike. Costs would only continue to rise as level 4 and 5 autonomy levels are reached.
Although, De Vos believes that SVA will help control those spiking costs, commenting, “We’re convinced this is where the vehicle has to go—lowering the cost of this technology.You have to take cost out of the existing system to be able to put that in at a price point consumers can actually afford or are willing to pay for.”
A few months ago Aptiv teamed together with Hyundai Motor Group to form a joint venture to help create level 4 and 5 autonomous driving technologies for cars that would be available for self-driving taxis, fleets, and auto manufacturers. These autonomous vehicles are expected to come sometime in 2020 then continue to grow into a “limited deployment inside an existing network” by 2022 and then increasing production by 2025. These autonomus cars would operate within a designated area which would prevent the cars from straying away.
This join venture isn't exclusive, which allows both companies to utilize these new technologies, research, and cost savings from their efforts however they choose.
De Vos does say that attempting to sell open source systems to auto manufacturers who typically keep their technologies private could be an issues. But, Aptiv believes that once these companies look into SVA they will be convinced to try it out.
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