Progress in steering technology hastens the drive towards automated driving, Frost & Sullivan study

Electric power steering is likely to be the standard fitment in the automotive industry.

multifunction_steering_wheel

As part of striving to attain vehicle automation, the vehicle manufacturers and vendors are likely to step up the investment in steering innovations, both for manually driven as well as automated vehicles, says a study conducted by Frost & Sullivan. The study further revealed that the focus would be more directed towards instructing the vehicles to drive like human beings, besides striving more on the efficacy o the vehicle to steer in a near human manner.

According to the new analysis from Frost & Sullivan, titled: ‘Strategic Analysis of Key Focus Areas for Steering Technology Development,’ steer-by-wire is likely to enter a wider spectrum of luxury vehicles in the not so distant future, though, the success depends on how the auto makers solve the issue of loss-of-steering-assist scenario. The study further says that the SUVs, MPVs and pick-up will opt for electric power steering (EPA).

According to an analyst from Frost & Sullivan Automotive and Transportation Research, the EPS fitment rates in the matured markets like North America and Europe are on the rise. What is more, the buyers are increasingly demanding the introduction of innovative technologies, in the advanced EPS functions including lane keeping assist and crosswind compensation

Steering-Assist

“EPS fitment rates in developed regions such as North America and Europe are high, and consumers are continuing to demand innovative technologies,” explains Frost & Sullivan Automotive and Transportation Research Analyst. “As a result, advanced EPS functions such as lane keeping assist and crosswind compensation will make inroads into these markets.”

Meanwhile, emerging markets are looking for the same features at a lower cost, as customers find EPS expensive compared to competing technologies such as hydraulic or electro-hydraulic power steering. These regions offer vast scope for low-cost column EPS since consumers are willing to compromise on certain characteristics such as noise, vibration and harshness for price.

Heavy duty EPS is another segment with tremendous untapped potential. Most commercial vehicles are still using the hydraulic or the electro-hydraulic system since traditional EPS has been unable to breach the 15 kilonewton (kN) barrier. Though the Ford F150 and Ram 1500 have deployed EPS, manufacturers must invest further to enable large-scale adoption in heavy vehicles.

“In addition, OEMs with a clear and practical strategy for loss-of-assist mitigation are more likely to be successful in developing steering systems that are tuned towards automated driving,” concludes the Analyst. “While this overall focus to develop state-of-the-art, driver-out-of-the-loop steering for all vehicle segments will gather pace, innovations to upgrade the steering feel of manually driven vehicles will also progress steadily.”

Strategic Analysis of Key Focus Areas for Steering Technology Development is a Market Insight that is part of the Automotive & Transportation (automotive.frost.com) Growth Partnership Service programme. The Insight researches and analyses steering system technology advancements, key strategic partnerships of OEMs and tier I participants globally, and their impact on technology growth and performance on a global level.

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