12. May 2016

Automated driving is the mobility of the future

Ever since the motor car was invented, Germany has been driving its development and technology advancement forward. Thanks to the excellence of its engineering, its world-class R&D infrastructure and its highly-qualified workforce, Germany is today Europe’s number one automotive producer – and market.

To make sure that Bavaria and Germany continue to lead the way in automotive innovation, the Bavarian Industry Association (vbw) has launched a series of events on automated driving, one of today’s most important mobility trends.

After looking at the legal challenges for automated driving in December 2015, the vbw on May 2 2016 hosted a discussion about the necessary transport and communications infrastructure, with a third event on data security and data protection to follow in August 2016.

In his remarks, the vbw’s Chief Executive Officer Bertram Brossardt said that the infrastructure requirements increase in line with the level of driving automation. For example, the “first generation” of automated driving relies on clearly legible road markings. In contrast, more advanced automated driving systems put a higher priority on fast and reliable data transmissions. Brossardt predicted that automated or autonomous driving at higher speeds is going to require a 5G mobile communications standard.

Brossardt welcomed the establishment of a “Digital Motorway Test Bed” on the A9 federal motorway in Bavaria. However, he also said that further test facilities are necessary to evaluate the capabilities of connected and automated vehicles in realistic environments, in particular in urban areas. Brossardt closed by saying that the infrastructure requirements mustn’t be allowed to hold back the progress of automated driving.

Making automated driving a success story in Germany

Alexander Dobrindt, the Federal Minister of Transport and Digital Infrastructure, underlined that automated driving will increase road safety, improve traffic flows and boost capacity. He urged the automotive industry to roll its success story forward into the digital era – and to exploit the opportunities for growth and prosperity inherent in the mobility of the future.

His aim, Dobrindt added, was for Germany to be a lead provider and a lead market for automated and connected driving.

Prof. Dr. Matthias Klingner, Director of the Fraunhofer Institute for Transportation and Infrastructure Systems, explained the importance of harmonizing the rules and regulations on automated driving at EU level. He also stressed the necessity of secure and standardized data transfers as well as of highly-accurate positioning in all environments.

The views of the automotive and logistics industries were represented by Dr. Stefan Knirsch, Member of the Board of Management of Audi AG, Technical Development, and by Henning R. Mack, Regional Director South-East Germany of Kuehne + Nagel, who said that automated driving can reduce traffic delays and allow a more efficient use of the existing transport infrastructure.


Dr. Peter Pfleger

Umwelt, Verkehr, Verbaucherschutz, Rohstoffe

Peter Pfleger