German auto supplier ZF is developing autonomous vehicle solutions in China, the world’s largest vehicle market.
The company is demonstrating its visual simultaneous localization and mapping technology that can position objects with centimeter-accuracy and generate real-time maps.
“The entire system is developed in China. It will debut at a Chinese car manufacturer by the end of 2022,” said Renee Wang, president of ZF China and senior vice-president of operations for the Asia-Pacific region.
“We believe that this infrastructure-independent automated valet parking system from ZF will be a cost-effective solution for many global carmakers,” said Wang.
Its global products are also making inroads into China. ZF said it has recently won orders from China’s largest carmaker SAIC Motor on its full-range radar that can enable Level 4 autonomous driving solutions.
The ZF radar perceives vehicle surroundings in four dimensions, including height. It has similar capabilities as optical sensors like lidars but is less costly, the company said. ZF will begin supplying the radars to SAIC in 2022.
Autonomous driving is an important part of ZF’s business strategy. At the Shanghai auto show, which runs through April 28, it is showcasing an on-board supercomputer for autonomous vehicles and valet parking solutions.
The supercomputer, called ProAI, is suitable for any vehicle type and for autonomous functions from Level 2 to Level 5, the company said.
Holger Klein, ZF board member for the Asia-Pacific region, said it has won several major orders and series production is scheduled to start in 2024.