Strategy Analytics: The Rise of the Automotive Domain Controller: When, Where and How?

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Strong growth driven by individual uptake across three main areas

Implementation of domain and zonal controller-based architectures remains at an early stage, and while Strategy Analytics forecasts overall domain controller penetration will approach 60% by 2028, the Strategy Analytics Powertrain, Body, Safety & Chassis Service (PBCS) Service report “The Rise of the Domain Controller: When, where and how?” notes the push towards centralized architectures and the subsequent use of domain controllers is occurring at different take-up rates.

There is no wholesale move towards centralization of automotive E/E architectures in place and while the intent is there, actual implementation is occurring on a piecemeal basis with individual OEMs. Similarly, there is no concerted effort towards domain-based or zonal-based architectures. The penetration of domain controllers for infotainment and ADAS is driving the initial implementation and being joined by domain controllers for the powertrain market. Non-traditional OEMs, e.g. Tesla, Nio, Xpeng etc., with a focus on electrification and autonomy/automated driving are leading while legacy OEMs such as BMW, Ford and Toyota have taken a more conservative approach.

“Electrification is a primary catalyst driving the move towards new vehicle E/E architectures and providing the growth opportunities for cockpit and ADAS domain controllers,” noted Asif Anwar, report author and PBCS Service Director. “Additionally, it is expected that xEV powertrain domain controller requirements will propel the introduction of Vehicle Control Units (VCUs).”

Mr. Anwar concluded, “Domain controller shipments from Aptiv, Continental, Harman, Visteon and others will grow at a CAAGR of 63.3% over 2020 – 2025 with the associated demand for semiconductor compute resources as well as associated memory and networking translating into a semiconductor market opportunity for the likes of Infineon, Huawei, NXP, Renesas and others worth over $6.4 billion by 2028.”

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