Video Series: The Turning Point

Aptiv’s revolutionary approach to vehicle architecture includes what we call the brain and the nervous system. Combined, these centers of expertise allow us to deliver the end-to-end solutions that unlock new features and functionality, and make new mobility a reality.



Why the World Needs Smart Vehicle ArchitectureTM


There’s a reason this video series is entitled “The Turning Point.” Because that’s where we are. 

As vehicle manufacturers add more and more features to each model year, and with each of those features requiring its own physical “box,” the traditional vehicle architecture has literally run out of space to house them all.

Put another way, automotive technology has reached an architecture break, and it’s happening right now, years before the critical mass we predicted with Level 4 and Level 5 autonomy.

Enter Aptiv's Smart Vehicle Architecture, a radically new approach to creating the more advanced vehicles of tomorrow (and even today). 

Smart Vehicle Architecture is the unified backbone for power and data for a Level 3 through Level 5 autonomous vehicle. Think of it as packaging all the technology today’s cars need — the computers, cameras, sensors, and power distribution — in a newly optimized and affordable way. Building an autonomous vehicle is certainly a challenge, but building them  at scale and cost effective is an entirely different one

With its wide range of capabilities and experience in everything from sensors to the cloud, Aptiv is the only company in the world with the deep and holistic system knowledge to bring both credible and affordable solutions to today’s vehicle architecture conundrum.



A Holistic Approach to a Fail-Safe Car


The key to the successful future of Level 3 through Level 5 autonomous cars is a system that is truly fail operational, and that’s what Aptiv's Smart Vehicle Architecture brings to the table. Smart Vehicle Architecture is an umbrella for three areas of Aptiv expertise that, working together, deliver the three-layer fail operational design that tomorrow’s autonomous cars are being built on.

The three areas? Compute, network, and smart vehicle power.

With Aptiv's Smart Vehicle Architecture, even a failure inside any of those domains can be addressed so the vehicle can still operate in a safe manner.


Your car’s compute drops out completely? No worries, Aptiv's Smart Vehicle Architecture includes an appropriate amount of redundant compute to bring that vehicle to a safe stop. Is there an on-car network failure? Aptiv’s Smart Vehicle Architecture includes a redundant network within a unique topology that still moves necessary data to where they need to go. Battery on the blink? Aptiv’s dual power supply with smart fusing ensures that all of a vehicle’s critical components retain their functionality to ensure continued safe operation.

Smart Vehicle Architecture is a holistic solution to an incredibly complex engineering challenge, and Aptiv’s proven expertise in compute, network, and power is what makes it real. 



What Automotive Can Learn from Your Smartphone


Manufacturers are able to focus on developing and delivering innovative user experience solutions today’s consumers demand — and those same consumers are able to continually add new features and capabilities using the same hardware their car currently runs on.

What’s the most important lesson your car can learn from your smartphone? No, it’s not how to take a selfie. It’s how to separate its hardware and software development lifecycles, so that each has its own road map—and end users no longer have to wait for a new car model year to enjoy new and exciting automotive features.

Think about it: You don’t have to buy a new iPhone model to download a new app. Why should your car be any different? 

Enabling separate development lifecycles for hardware and software to the automotive space is a win for automakers and consumers alike.

Of course, decoupling hardware and software for a car presents engineering challenges your smartphone never had to deal with. It requires, among other things, replacing today’s outmoded distributed computing architecture with a Smart Vehicle Architecture featuring high-performance central computing units.

And that’s just one way Aptiv is leading the charge in creating this entirely new way of architecting a car.



Making Redundancy Affordable the Smart Vehicle Architecture Way


There’s just not enough space for all the redundancy in today’s vehicle architecture. And even if there was, doubling everything would make the car too heavy and far too expensive to be a practical solution to address the world’s mobility challenge.

The real epiphany for an auto manufacturer comes after they build their first automated vehicle. To get the three-layer fail operational design you need, you just double everything. Double the compute for the brains. Double the network for signal. Double the wires for power.

Easy, right? Wrong.

To make the leap from today’s Level 2 to Level 3 through Level 5 autonomous vehicles, redundancy is not enough. What the automotive world needs is affordable redundancy. And getting there starts by asking one very tough question: “What’s the appropriate amount of redundancy that is needed to guarantee three-layer fail operational design?” This question is the key tenet of Aptiv's Smart Vehicle Architecture. The answer is a holistic one: optimizing and integrating compute, signal and power, tangible and affordable, for a future full of autonomous vehicles.