Vehicle features as cornerstone of platform development Vehicle development has changed fundamentally since the first edition of the "motor car" appeared. Today, the integration of product characteristics (features), the fulfillment of desired functions and the attributes of the vehicle are the focus of development work. The software and the electrical-electronic architecture, as well as the components, are derived from these features. New vehicle architectures must meet a wide range of legal, business and customer-specific requirements - and are expected to remain competitive over a long period of time. For this reason, the platform must be cost-effective and flexibly expandable over its life cycle. New functions must be able to be implemented with as little change effort as possible without jeopardizing reliability or safety in operation. This is where AVL's holistic functional vehicle development approach with focus on vehicle characteristics helps to develop a secured vehicle platform in a cost-efficient way and with short development time. The function-based development approach is based on a holistic view of customer functions with the assigned attributes of system requirements and the physical implementation of the functions by hardware and software with corresponding verification and validation loops. To reduce development time, costs and the number of prototypes, simulation in the in the loop (Sil, MiL, HiL, ViL) is used at the earliest possible stage. This means, that the high-voltage system already maps transient events and helps to find solutions on vehicle level long before the first vehicle is built and driven on the road. However, this cross-system view not only helps to optimize the platform layout, but also creates room for innovative solutions when integrating functions. For example, additional tasks can be assigned to components, which is also advantageous when creating a functional safety concept. Efficient development and a balanced end product, taking into account the specified schedule and development budget, are more important today than ever before. The increasing importance of functions and attributes in the vehicle and their ability to be influenced by electronic controls and software make a development network of virtual and physical environments essential. AVL's holistic approach makes it possible to resolve conflicting goals at a very early stage, to make the right technological decisions, and to minimize the number of hardware prototypes while increasing their maturity. All this guarantees efficient development and a balanced final product, taking into account the given schedule and costs. With the help of these sophisticated methodologies, it is possible to bring a high number of variants, derivatives and new developments to market safely, quickly and cost-effectively and to establish new business models in after sales.
Dipl.-Ing. Stefan Riedler, Senior Product Manager Vehicle, AVL List GmbH