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Frost & Sullivan expects premium and mass market passenger car OEMs to adopt shift-by-wire technology by 2020

New analysis from consultancy Frost & Sullivan—“Key Focus Areas for Driving Interface Systems for Passenger Cars”—projects that shift-by-wire technology is likely to be adopted in premium segment cars globally and across volume segments in mature markets such as North America, Germany and Japan by 2020. Although the technology is currently expensive, commoditization will bring down the cost of these systems and make it ready for the mass market.

Other highlights of the analysis include:

  • Shift-by-wire technology is expected to be widely adopted due to its ability to reduce noise, vibration, and harshness, offer design flexibility, and augment response time. It is likely to be one of the enabling technologies for level 4 automated vehicles, wherein driver input will be minimal/nil.

  • At present, shift-by-wire technology is used in automated self parking, wherein the car parks itself without driver input. The technology is likely to remain confined to the premium vehicles segments due to the high cost involved. Adoption in the volumes segment is expected after 2020.

  • Road surface condition sensing systems are in the pre-development phase, and premium original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) are likely to be the initial adopters of the technology. Non-contact-based sensors and co-operative systems are likely to be the preferred road sensing systems for OEMs as they offer seamless integration potential with other systems, such as advanced driver assistance systems.

  • Haptic feedback accelerator pedal technology is being considered by most OEMs because of its ability to analyze a vehicle’s environment and provide feedback on the level of acceleration input needed through the pedal. It is likely to be implemented in the premium segment post 2018.

Passenger car OEMs are striving to provide better driving dynamics, stability and safety by integrating driving interface systems. These can monitor the state of vehicles and its surroundings and dynamically optimize traction and ride performance. While electronic transmission shift is being used as one of the enabling technologies for future autonomous self-driving vehicles and driver assistance systems, haptic feedback is being employed to enrich the driving skills of drivers.

—Frost & Sullivan Automotive & Transportation Senior Research Analyst Kamalesh Mohanarangam


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