KA AND CHASSIS AUTONOMY
KONGSBERG AUTOMOTIVE’S (KA`S) COLLABORATION WITH CHASSIS AUTONOMY
In July 2023, KA completed the share purchase in Chassis Autonomy, acquiring 20% of the total shares. KA has been in collaboration with Chassis Autonomy for the past year, and this purchase was a step further in strengthening the collaboration.
Chassis Autonomy, based in Trollhättan, Sweden and London, UK, specializes in the design and development of steer-by-wire and brake-by-wire systems that comprise the mechanical hardware, control electronics, and software) for use in highly automated (L3) and fully autonomous (L4 and L5) vehicles and other applications where KA is seeking a strong market position.
UNIQUE KA AND CHASSIS AUTONOMY COLLABORATION
Globally, Tier 1 companies with major business operations and global facilities dominate the supply of automotive steering systems. They are designed for the development and production of steering systems at mass volume. The mass production capability ensures quality and cost competitiveness and access to customer networks.
Meanwhile, rapid electrification across the automotive industry has enabled the growth in not just new technologies but a completely new sector – autonomous vehicles.
According to Thomas Li, co-founder and CTO of Chassis Autonomy says primary market focus for Chassis Autonomy is the autonomous sector, where the Tier 1 dominance is at its greatest. "The introductory market dynamic and rapid development expectations from autonomous vehicle developers (with initial low production volumes) creates a barrier to entry for the Tier 1 companies (where they are too slow and too expensive). This is a niche for Chassis Autonomy," he says.
When it comes to synergies between KA and Chassis Autonomy, this collaboration is a perfect fit. KA is an established Tier 1 and Tier 2 supplier, with proven capability and expertise in delivering products to the automotive sector at automotive grade quality. KA has significant experience in developing actuation systems with major technical synergies between the ECA (electronic clutch actuator) and Chassis Autonomy’s SbW system.
KA's investment in Chassis Autonomy represents a tangible long-term ambition in the technology field relevant to autonomous driving. With this collaboration, KA is positioning itself to offer unique technology to our customers, which will empower them to incorporate fail-operational steer-by-wire solutions in their vehicles today, preparing them for autonomous driving (L3-5).
"Leveraging the development experience, testing and development facilities, supply chain of KA will enable Chassis Autonomy to accelerate development towards serial production" says Thomas.
"Autonomous vehicles are becoming an important market for the future of the automotive industry. The Combination of our strategy, experience and the trend in the industry indicated that the collaboration was a good match. The potential is big, and we are already seeing increasing interests from our customers", says Ivar Haug KA’s Vice President of Research & Development.
DISRUPTING THE AUTOMOTIVE STRUCTURE
Both KA and Chassis Autonomy are confident that this collaboration will succeed against what the large established suppliers who make control actuators do today. "Chassis Autonomy brings rapid innovation, with a world class engineering team that is committed to disrupting the current automotive structure and realizing real change that will have a far-reaching benefit to society," says Thomas.
Thomas adds, "Our ground-up designed actuators are not compromised by legacy but optimized to deliver fault tolerant and fail-operational performance for highly automated and fully autonomous vehicles," says Thomas, adding, "The collaboration with KA allows us to maintain our rapid development pace, accelerate technical development and leverage KAs extensive development expertise and technical facilities to reduce the time-to-market."