The development towards automated driving will require innovative electronics architectures in the car, Salessy pointed out. “There will be a central platform”, he said. This central computing platform will likely develop from the dedicated Safety ECU that ensures functional safety. Such a Safety ECU will be required for Level 3 of autonomy and handle all sensor data.
Salessy strongly recommended the use of standard technologies in automotive electronics, and this is why PSA is committed to Ethernet. “You cannot deal with proprietary solutions”, Salessy said. “We have been through this journey before”, referring to a proprietary version of CAN which Peugeot developed with Renault back in the nineties. “It was a very good solution, but it was not an international standard”, he said. “We absolutely want to avoid this story again”. With standard technology, a carmaker has a much larger choice at different levels – tier one suppliers, tools and engineering skills.
Upon the question “when will you enable software updates over the air (OTA)?”, Salessy answered with a counterquestion: “What do you want to update?”, hinting that this feature depends on the amount of data and the requied level of security involved. The capability to update all software of all ECUs in the car will take some time before it will arrive in series vehicles. However, PSA cars have already limited OTA capabilities; by the end of the current year, PSA plans to expand this feature to the infotainment system, and by 2020 to a number of additional ECUs.