How is AUTOSAR software developed?

Elle Farrell-Kingsley explores the process of AUTOSAR software development

Automotive trends like autonomous driving, diagnostics and security are based on in-vehicle software functions. For these functions to work seamlessly, each electric control unit (ECU) must work efficiently. Many modern vehicles have up to 100 ECUs to support complex vehicular functions. AUTomotive Open System ARchitecture (AUTOSAR) is an open system architecture to support automotive original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) and Tier 1 suppliers to improve ECU software quality and is a growing and evolving standard defining a layered architecture for software.

Special report: AUTOSAR and the autonomous vehicle

As cars become more connected, the need for improved software increases. “AUTOSAR is important as it supports many security building blocks, secure communication and intrusion detection systems,” says ETAS Senior Security Consultant Michael Schneider. ETAS is a premium partner of the AUTOSAR consortium.

The consortium

AUTOSAR was founded in 2003 by a consortium of companies, including the BMW Group, Bosch, Continental, Daimler, Ford, General Motors, PSA Group, Toyota, and Volkswagen. Other premium members of the 63 leading contributors include Baidu, Dassault, Honda, Nissan and Volvo. As premium partners of the AUTOSAR consortium, the likes of ETAS and Bosch make regular contributions.

Schneider was recently appointed speaker of the working group in security, contributing actively to the consortium. “I specifically focus on security,” he says, “but other ETAS colleagues contribute towards execution management, diagnostics, communication.” Each contribution advances the rigorous standards and updates provided by AUTOSAR. Works in progress, concepts and features are all discussed within the consortium.

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