ZF on mobility transition – part 2: Digitization

July 07, 2020 // By Christoph Hammerschmidt
Corona speeds transition – part 2
In addition to the electrification of the powertrain, digitization is the second major trend in the automotive industry, which is experiencing a massive acceleration due to the corona crisis. The technology supplier ZF Friedrichshafen explains how to do this.

The electric drive as such is the cornerstone for CO2-free and energy-efficient mobility of the future. The first part of our two-part report on ZF's strategy for the future dealt with how the company wants to successively bid farewell to combustion engine technology and switch its product range to electric mobility. But, as it soon becomes clear, for this friction-free mobility, the electric driveline is only the basic element, the rough diamond, so to speak, which still needs to be cut. Because the efficiency of the already highly efficient electric drive can also be further increased. The means to achieve this are digital. By using all internal sensors and external data sources, the driving strategy can be optimized and energy consumption further reduced. ZF speaks of an efficiency-focused design of Model Predictive Control: In addition to internal sensors such as radar and camera as well as V2X communication (which is regarded as a sensor by the system engineers), topology and traffic data also flow into the driving strategy. Vehicles can thus automatically reduce their speed before a tight bend, and the optimum speed can be set automatically on a route controlled by traffic lights.

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