Frankfurt Motor Show supplier technology preview

  • 04-Sep-2013 09:21 EDT
Preh Center Console Concept 2013.jpg

Preh’s Center Console Concept 2013.

The 2013 Frankfurt Motor promises to be a tour de force of technology as the industry in Europe tries to innovate its way out of recession. The 65th International Motor Show (IAA) Cars, as it’s known in Germany, will take place in Frankfurt for 11 days following two press (and industry) days on Sept. 10 and 11.

In addition to new production cars and concept vehicles, the top suppliers will be showing their technology and engineering for safer, more convenient, and greener applications. The overall number of suppliers exhibiting at the event has increased 23% from the last show in 2011, going from 305 to 375.

Here is a sneak peek at some supplier technologies on display at the event.

Preh’s Center Console Concept 2013 focuses on more intuitive function for automotive interiors. The company's advanced development engineers have combined different input types in the center-console concept, with selection of functions simplified by haptic, acoustic, and visual feedback. The interface is comprised of three-dimensional-shaped glass with three-dimensional function icons. These icons can be created without the use of LCD displays and are an integral part of the fourth generation of Preh’s black-panel display technology. Concept 2013, like other center console studies the supplier has shown at the IAA since 2007, serves as an idea generator for joint projects with customers.

TRW will highlight its most advanced active, passive, and integrated safety technologies to enable semi-automated driving. Among the suite of technologies are driver-assist systems including a next-generation S-CAM 3 video camera and AC1000 radar; intelligent controllers such as a safety domain ECU that can integrate multiple chassis and driver-assist functions; actuators including integrated brake control and electrically powered steering; and adaptive occupant safety technologies and improved rear-seat safety solutions. The S-CAM 3 video camera has six times the processing power of the current S-CAM to provide higher performance and a number of advanced new functions. The AC1000 radar family will be suitable for front, rear, and side sensing applications and will also be able to detect pedestrians. The Safety Domain ECU can gather, process, and act on the increasing levels of data created for high-level safety functions.

Johnson Controls will show lightweight seating systems, an innovative interior concept, and energy-saving batteries. The company’s intelligent seating systems bring together significant weight reduction, comfort, safety, and functionality advances along with individual design and personalization. Premiering in Europe is the Synergy Seat Gen 3, with innovations in metal structures and mechanisms, foam, covers, and textiles. Another concept showcases the company's vision for integrating electronics, interiors, and seating into a premium vehicle. This interior concept is based on the company’s latest market research for customizing interiors and adapting global platforms for various vehicle segments and to local markets. JCI’s new microhybrid battery solution uses a 48-volt lithium-ion battery in combination with a 12-volt lead-acid unit to enable vehicles to achieve fuel savings up to 15% vs. traditional systems.

Continental, as a part of its new brand image, will be showing full coverage of the vehicle environment by means of Surround View sensing, "48 Volt Eco Drive" for graduated and affordable hybridization of the powertrain, its latest-generation head-up displays, surface materials with enhanced scratch resistance, and its systems expertise in the domain of automated driving. The 48 Volt Eco Drive system supplements the traditional 12-V electrical network with a 48-V electrical system and components. It bridges the gap between low-end hybridization, based on present-day 12-V stop-start systems, and more sophisticated high-voltage hybrid solutions. The system is said to be easy to install, while also offering many of the functions and fuel economy benefits that were previously offered only on mild hybrids with their higher voltage levels. To illustrate the benefits, Continental has installed the Eco Drive system in a demonstrator vehicle. The system offers NEDC (New European Driving Cycle) fuel savings of around 13%. The 48-V solution is getting great attention in the industry. Initial orders from customers point to a production launch in 2016.

Eberspaecher will show its new approaches to exhaust technology solutions, from a combined SCR/DPF system, through bionic-inspired lightweight construction solutions, up to the next ActiveSilence generation. Its ActiveSound technology, already in production for Audi, will be shown in a demo vehicle to give diesels the option of a sportier sound. In another demo vehicle, ActiveSilence technology reduces exhaust noise and is being readied for production in 2015, according to Dr. Thomas Waldhier, COO Exhaust Technology. In gasoline engines with fewer cylinders and supercharging, disturbing exhaust noise is cancelled out of the sound signature. In other projects, the company has integrated the functionality of selective catalytic reduction into a diesel particulate filter and demonstrates potential weight savings in a lightweight construction exhaust concept.

KSPG will exhibit products for reducing fuel consumption and emissions including a low-vibration, low-noise range extender installed in a demonstration electric vehicle. The range-extended approach is gaining favor with industry experts and legislators to pave the way for more general acceptance of electric vehicles. The extender’s advantage is the related reduction in battery size, cost, and weight, and it allows long-distance travel without lengthy recharging stops en route. Other company exhibit highlights are the UniValve, a mechanical valve-actuating device that operates with low friction for fuel consumption and CO2 emissions reduction; partly and fully variable electric oil, vacuum, and coolant pumps; and lightweight engine blocks in some cases featuring the newest PTWA coating technology.

Hengst Automotive fluid management and modern filtration solutions will include technologies aimed at achieving greater efficiency, resource conservation, and economic viability. One example is the S614H multifunctional module developed for the new 1.6 SIDI turbo engine in Opel’s Cascada. Using a die-cast aluminum housing manufactured at the company’s foundry, the module provides oil and coolant via quick connectors to the engine’s turbocharger in a compact package. The cooling circuit is maintained by intelligent control of the water pump using an electrically controlled characteristic map. An efficient oil/water heat exchanger keeps the heat balance of the engine oil in equilibrium. In addition, the multifunctional module provides the turbocharger with oil and coolant via quick connectors.

In addition, check out our review of Federal-Mogul's upgraded simulation and testing capabilities to meet engine downsizing requirements ( and AEI’s more extensive coverage of cars and technology online before, during, and after the show.

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