The recent history of the automobile is characterized by intensive electronification. Forces driving this are the continually more demanding wishes of customer for safety and comfort/convenience in an automobile, as well as increasingly more stringent exhaust emissions legislation. Also responsible for the automobile developing into a high-tech product is the constant innovative pressure driven by competition and cost pressure.

At the beginning of electronification, the electronic architecture was typified by ECUs that operated independent of one another. Soon, however, it was discovered that coordination of electronic control units or electronic systems had the potential for immensely improving and extending vehicle functionality. Over the course of time, electronic functions found their way into the automobile that could not be implemented without highly active data exchange between electronic ECUs. Consider vehicle dynamics functions, for example, whose underlying control loops are implemented and closed via multiple electronic control units.

Initially, the networking between electronic control units needed for this was implemented conventionally, i.e. each signal to be transmitted was assigned an electrical line. However, electronic systems were requiring more and more intensive networking to implement them, which drove wiring expense sky high. A way out of this dilemma soon appeared in the form of bit-serial exchange of data via a communication channel (Bus) jointly used by a number of electronic control units.

Today, numerous serial bus systems perform their duty as an essential part of modern electronic architectures in the motor vehicle. They not only provide for minimized wiring effort, which reduces costs, space requirements, weight and error susceptibility, and they simplify project planning and installation. Above all, they guarantee reliable and sound data exchange in real-time and assure high flexibility in relation to changes and extensions.