Connected Car News: Xilinx, TrovaCV, Mixel, Cypress, Mercedes-Benz, NIO, Geotab & Volvo

In connected car news are Xilinx, TrovaCV, Mixel, Cypress, Mercedes-Benz, NIO, Geotab and Volvo.

Xilinx Powers Subaru EyeSight

Xilinx, Inc. announced that its technology is powering the new version of Subaru’s vision-based advanced driver-assistance system (ADAS), EyeSight. Integrated into the all-new Subaru Levorg, the new EyeSight system will provide advanced features including adaptive cruise control, lane-keep assist and pre-collision braking, putting best-in-class safety technology into the hands of consumers.

The Xilinx® Automotive-qualified (XA) Zynq® UltraScale+™ multi-processor system-on-a-chip (MPSoC) 16 nanometer technology provides the high-performance, ultra-low latency, and functional safety (ASIL) capabilities that EyeSight requires to accurately depict and react to dynamic driving scenarios.

Collignon Lauches TrovaCV

Patrick Collignon, former chief operating officer for Volvo Trucks North and South America, has launched Trova Commercial Vehicles (TrovaCV). The new company offers customized engineering and manufacturing expertise for commercial vehicles, specifically fully electric trucks.

TrovaCV will focus on the engineering, design and production of fully electric commercial vehicles with the goal of achieving mass production cost-effectively. TrovaCV will offer its industrial model and manufacturing capability to other commercial vehicle OEMs while developing its own fully electric vehicle.

Keysight Tech Selected by China FAW

Keysight Technologies, Inc. a leading technology company that helps enterprises, service providers and governments accelerate innovation to connect and secure the world, announced that China FAW Group Co, Ltd (FAW) has selected the company’s connected car test solutions to ensure the reliability and performance of in-vehicle and vehicle-to-vehicle (V2V) communications across Ethernet, eCall, cellular V2X (C-V2X), 4G, and 5G.

Mixel  MIP IP Expands

Mixel, a leading provider of mixed-signal intellectual property (IP), announced today that Mixel’s patented MIPI® IP solution, MIPI D-PHYSM RX+, continues to expand its market share and provide advanced features for automotive microcontrollers.

Mixel developed a proprietary MIPI IP configuration, MIPI D-PHY RX+, that allows for full-speed production testing without requiring a full-D-PHY Universal configuration. With this patented solution, Mixel has been able to achieve a smaller footprint and improved performance of the D-PHY RX, resulting in a substantial reduction of 35% in area and 50% reduction in standby power. Additionally, this unique configuration enables higher data rate performance by minimizing the capacitive load at the high-speed serial interface pins and isolating the loop back test from any loading on the serial interface pins, all while achieving 100% test coverage of the complete IP.

Cypress Traveo II


The Cypress Traveo II® product family supports the latest in car networks, offers high performance graphics engines optimized for a minimum memory footprint, and embeds dedicated features to increase data security in the car.

“For our latest generation of Traveo II® automotive microcontrollers, we had aggressive power, area and performance requirements in a challenging process node,” said Cypress Semiconductor Vice President, Sean Foley. “The Mixel development team worked well with Cypress and went the extra mile to deliver a differentiated, patented MIPI D-PHY IP for automotive clusters that will enable our customers to meet their design requirements with Traveo II® MCUs. Cypress looks forward to continued collaboration with Mixel.”

While Cypress is one of the latest customers to implement Mixel’s MIPI PHY IP solutions, Mixel has been focused on providing auto-grade IP to its customers for many years. One of the first was GEO Semiconductor, Inc. (“GEO”), the market leader in camera video processors (CVP) for automotive viewing cameras. Mixel has provided its MIPI D-PHY IP in three generations of GEO’s CVP product family including the GEO GW5. Every product was a first silicon success.

Mercedes-Benz Me Adapter Reaches .5 Million

Since 2016, Mercedes-Benz has been offering its customers the option of equipping as yet unconnected vehicles from older model series dating back to 2002 with the Mercedes me Adapter. Connecting the adapter with a smartphone means that connectivity services are no longer solely reserved to customers buying new cars. More than half a million vehicles worldwide have been equipped with the adapter to date. The 500,000th adapter was activated in Malaysia. Vehicles retrofitted with the adapter are now on the roads in a total of 33 markets in Europe and the Asian/Pacific region. With Estonia, Lithuania and Cyprus, three more markets will be added this year. Since August this year, customers have had the option of installing the adapter in their Mercedes-Benz cars on their own and without visiting a certified service partner. A self-service installation process in the app guides the user through the individual steps. This makes the activation possible in a matter of minutes.

The activation requires the installation of the Mercedes me Adapter, a Mercedes me user account and a connection with the Mercedes me Adapter App. Information is read out from the vehicle and uploaded in the app via Bluetooth.

The app offers Mercedes-Benz owners various functions from four central areas: my vehicle, mobility, statistics and service. The integrated gas station and parking space finder is among the most commonly used features, with customers accessing this function an average of 150,000 times a week. This function shows gas stations in the surrounding area together with their fuel prices and opening hours, and indicates available parking spaces at nearby car parks, including parking costs.

Another popular function is the telediagnostics, via which the app outputs a warning message to alert the user directly to any malfunctions or problems relating to the vehicle. On their smartphone, customers can keep an eye on everything – from low oil level through low battery voltage to critical tyre pressure. The app informs the dealer automatically when a service is due. Customers can book an appointment online in the app and contact their service partner and a 24-hour hotline directly on the phone or by email as well.

In addition to features on everyday topics such as parking, refuelling and navigation, the Mercedes me Adapter App also provides information on the vehicle and services for the owner. Factors such as fuel level, engine oil and coolant temperature, engine load and intake temperature are depicted in what is known as the Cockpit. The individual driving style is analysed via the Driver Score feature. This documents the driver’s acceleration and braking behaviour to enable comfortable and economical driving. Previous journeys and refuelling stops can be viewed in the Statistics area – the list is exportable and can serve as a basis for creating a log. The app reminds the user automatically when the tyre pressure or oil level need a checking or when the next service is due, indicating the remaining time and mileage.

NIO Launches Battery As Service

Premium EV manufacturer NIO has officially launched Battery as a Service (BaaS) for customers in China. Now, NIO BaaS users can purchase a car without the battery, making EVs more price competitive against existing powertrains, while also providing the flexibility to change battery capacity depending on their needs and pay accordingly. In addition, BaaS also represents a systematic solution to the long-existing challenges for EV penetration, including battery degradation, battery upgradability, and lower resale value.

With the battery price not included in the vehicle sales price, nor in the finance payments, the costs are significantly lower to switch to an EV. Users who choose to purchase NIO cars with BaaS can benefit from RMB 70,000 off the car price across all NIO models, and subscribe to a 70 kWh battery pack for only RMB 980 per month. Users who have not subscribed to NIO’s Worry-Free Service Plan need to pay a battery guarantee fee of RMB 80 per month. NIO has achieved the homologation for vehicles to be sold without the battery and the first BaaS user has already completed the purchase process including finance, car insurance and vehicle registration.

Geotab FedRAMP

Geotab, a global leader in IoT and connected transportation, today announced that it has successfully achieved full Federal Risk and Authorization Management Program (FedRAMP) authorization for its cloud-based telematics platform. With a standing reputation as the chosen solution provider for all levels of government across North America, Geotab’s FedRAMP status validates the organization’s ability to meet stringent security requirements set forth by the U.S. federal government and enables Geotab to offer its fleet management products and services to the General Services Administration (GSA) and other federal, state and local government agencies.

Volvo Helps to Eliminate Student Deb

Volvo Car USA and its retail partners are encouraging more people to pursue and stay in lucrative careers as auto service technicians with a unique program that could effectively eliminate $20,000 or more in student debt and other expenses.

In addition to paying for an education and certification, auto service technicians are also expected to have their own tools in order to secure employment with a name-brand new car retailer. A professional toolset and tool box can cost tens of thousands of dollars.

The Volvo Technician Tool Program eliminates that cost by providing technicians free and permanent access to the tools they need to do their jobs.

Retailers can benefit by attracting younger technicians who are better trained in modern auto repair, which is ever more focused on computer, hybrid and electric vehicle technology.

Volvo Car USA worked with Wurth Tools to assemble a 72 piece set with both hand and cordless tools that enables new technicians to perform more than 80% of the jobs they will encounter at a certified Volvo Car Service Center.

Tools are organized and stored in a custom locking cabinet installed by the retailer, who is responsible for maintaining and replacing individual pieces.

Eyesight Tech Partners with GloboConnect

Eyesight Technologies, an AI computer vision solutions leader,  announced a partnership with GloboConnect, a leading provider of telematics systems for fleets, to develop a driver monitoring telematics device targeted for the Oil & Gas fleets industry. The device will combine Eyesight Technologies’ computer vision and AI based driver monitoring system (DMS) along with Globo’s telematics infrastructure and hardware to improve road safety for an estimated 50,000 vehicles in oil & gas fleets.

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