Evolution of the Vehicle Electrical/electronic Architecture and Mobility

Evolution of the Vehicle Electrical/electronic Architecture and Mobility

A key discussion point is often the required evolution of vehicle systems and associated cost impacts and benefits from the new implementations.   The electrical vehicle architecture is one area where we will see innovation.   Our speakers from Roke, Valeo and Ricardo will talk on more detail on the changes.    An example of which is the move to a centralized electrical and electronic architecture for the vehicles.

With so much discussion surrounding driverless taxis, mobility services and the move to shared and autonomous vehicles, it is not surprising that we are starting to see innovation in concepts for future vehicles and a need for electronic architecture designs.   


Key Insights in Architecture Opportunities

  • Vehicle EE architectures will need to evolve to accommodate the significant increases in sensors, processing and power consumption associated with L3-L5 autonomy.  

  • Additionally, the architectures will want to be safe and (cyber) secure by design.  This can bring competing goals and adoption of high speed ethernet or similar communication network.

  • The additional design and development costs can be significant if the current de-centralized architecture is maintained and all key ECUs have to be ASIL C or D compliant, each self- driving / ADAS feature has its own controller and both CAN and Ethernet communications networks are deployed.  

  • With rapid technology development, it is often a challenge to ensure ECUs selected during design are not obsolete by the time vehicle is released to market

  • There are technical and cost benefits of moving to more centralized architectures, where processing, control, safety and security are handled within a single unit, allowing other ECUs to become smart peripherals.

  • Several companies, including Audi and NVidia, are working on a central Driver assistance Controller which will be key to future centralized systems

Ricardo studies have shown there can be $150 - $500 cost savings per vehicle by transitioning to a single dominant controller and integrating the key features and functions within it.

Further proliferation of ECUs can be managed through vehicle network changes and high speed data communications

Advanced Vehicle Architecture:

  • Concepts for developing a more centralized architecture include domains and single central computing unit (with redundancy)
  • Opportunity to exploit increases in ECU processing power and high speed networks
  • Opportunity for few full feature powerful controllers and “dumb” peripheral devices
  • Ricardo analyzed the cost savings of a centralized architecture with a single domain/vehicle ECU managing ASIL D functionality and using smart sensors/actuators to enact features
Centralized systems Cost reduction
Complete Vehicle $500
Powertrain domian only $150

am2025 inforgraphic
Example: Audi’s End-2-End Architecture

Our Connectivity, Cybersecurity and Technology session on day 1 of the conference should provide key insights on the expected features and functions by 2025 and an understanding of the implications for industry. Find out more about the Advanced Mobility 2025 conference or click here to register.