AUTOSAR – Overview and use in the Automotive Industry

Automotive Trends & Technology

Key take aways

  • AUTOSAR, (the Automotive Open System Architecture), is an international collaborative effort that seeks to create a universal and standardized software framework for electronic control units (ECUs) in automobiles.
  • The purpose of AUTOSAR is to create an open and standardized software architecture that enhances the development, integration, and compatibility of software components.
  • We can distinguish between the AUTOSAR Classic Platform & AUTOSAR Adaptive Platform, which differ, among other things, in their standards.
  • AUTOSAR architecture encompasses the Basic Software Architecture, the Runtime Environment, and the Application Layer, all working together to enhance automotive software development, integration, and interoperability.

AUTOSAR overview and use in the Automotive Industry

Revolutionizing the automotive industry, AUTOSAR has quickly become a buzzword driving innovation and efficiency. But what exactly it is? In this blog post, we will delve into the world of Automotive Open System Architecture (AUTOSAR) to uncover its history, purpose, how it has become an indispensable standard in the automotive realm. And of course – why adopt AUTOSAR standard.

Understanding AUTOSAR

AUTOSAR stands for Automotive Open System Architecture and it is a global development partnership aiming to establish an open and standardized software architecture for automotive electronic control units (ECUs).

AUTOSAR standardization plays a crucial role in achieving interoperability between various ECUs within a vehicle. It provides a set of specifications, guidelines, and templates that help automotive companies develop reusable software components while ensuring compatibility across different hardware platforms.

AUTOSAR offers two main platforms: the Classic Platform and the Adaptive Platform. The Classic Platform focuses on traditional embedded systems, providing well-established standards for real-time applications. On the other hand, the Adaptive Platform targets next-generation vehicles with high-performance computing capabilities, enabling more flexibility through its service-oriented architecture.

At its core, AUTOSAR consists of three fundamental layers: Basic Software (BSW), Runtime Environment (RTE), and Application Layer. The BSW layer encompasses low-level functionalities such as communication stacks or diagnostic modules necessary for overall system operation. The RTE layer manages interconnections between application software components within an ECU, allowing seamless communication between them. At the topmost layer lies the Application Layer which contains specific functions related to individual vehicle features.

What is AUTOSAR?

At its core, AUTOSAR aims to address the complex challenges faced by automakers when it comes to developing electronic systems for their vehicles. These challenges include increasing complexity of software and hardware integration, interoperability issues between different vehicle components, and the need for efficient collaboration among different stakeholders.

To meet these challenges head-on, AUTOSAR standard defines a set of rules that enable seamless integration of software modules from various suppliers into a unified system. By following these standards, automakers can achieve greater scalability, flexibility, and reusability in their software.

How did it begin?

The history of AUTOSAR dates back to the early 2000s when a group of automotive manufacturers and suppliers recognized the need for standardization in automotive software development. They came together to form the partnership, with the aim of developing an open and standardized architecture for automotive software.

The initial version of AUTOSAR, known as Release 2.1, was released in 2006. It focused on providing a common methodology for designing electronic control units (ECUs) and defining interfaces between different components.

Over the years, AUTOSAR has evolved and grown in popularity within the automotive industry. New releases introducing more advanced features and addressing various challenges faced by automakers.

One significant milestone in the history of AUTOSAR was the introduction of two distinct platforms: Classic Platform and Adaptive Platform. The Classic Platform is designed for traditional embedded systems, while the Adaptive Platform caters to more flexible computing architectures.

Despite its relatively short history, AUTOSAR has made significant strides towards achieving its goal of enabling seamless collaboration among various stakeholders involved in automotive software development.

What is AUTOSAR standardization?

AUTOSAR standardization plays a crucial role in the automotive industry, providing a common framework for developing and implementing software architectures. But what exactly is AUTOSAR standardization?

The AUTOSAR standard defines a common set of specifications and guidelines that enable interoperability among different vehicle components from multiple suppliers. This allows automakers to easily integrate new features into their vehicles without having to completely redesign or redevelop the entire system.

By following this standards, automakers can ensure compatibility between hardware and software across different vehicle models, reducing development time while improving efficiency. This leads to cost savings, faster time-to-market, and greater flexibility in customizing vehicles based on customer preferences.

The purpose of AUTOSAR

The purpose of AUTOSAR is to maintain automotive standards, specifically in the area of software development for electronic control units (AUTOSAR ECU). With the increasing complexity and functionality required in modern vehicles, it has become essential to have a standardized approach to developing automotive software.

By providing a common platform and set of guidelines, AUTOSAR allows different manufacturers and suppliers to work together seamlessly. This promotes collaboration and interoperability between various components and systems within a vehicle.

One key goal of AUTOSAR is to improve efficiency in software development. By using standardized interfaces, modules can be developed independently and then integrated into the overall system more easily. This reduces both time-to-market and development costs for automakers.

Another important purpose of AUTOSAR is to enhance flexibility in terms of hardware-software integration. With a standardized architecture, different ECUs can be used interchangeably without requiring major modifications or customizations. This enables greater scalability and adaptability for automotive systems.

Additionally, AUTOSAR aims to improve reusability by allowing software components developed for one project or vehicle model to be reused in future projects. This not only saves time but also ensures consistency across different platforms.

The purpose of AUTOSAR is to streamline software development processes while enhancing compatibility, flexibility, efficiency, and reusability within the automotive industry. It provides a framework that benefits both automakers and suppliers by reducing costs, improving collaboration, promoting innovation, and ultimately delivering safer and more reliable vehicles on our roads.

AUTOSAR Classic Platform

AUTOSAR Classic Platform is a key component of the AUTOSAR standard, designed specifically for the automotive industry. It provides a standardized framework for developing and integrating software in vehicles, ensuring compatibility and reusability across different vehicle models and manufacturers.

At its core, the AUTOSAR Classic Platform consists of two main layers: Basic Software Architecture (BSW) and Application Layer. The BSW layer includes modules such as communication stacks, diagnostic services, memory management, and device drivers. These modules handle low-level functions required by the application layer.

On top of the BSW layer lies the Application Layer, which contains software components responsible for specific vehicle functionalities like powertrain control or infotainment systems. These components can be developed independently from each other and easily integrated into a system using standardized interfaces.

Why Classic Platform?

One of the major advantages of using AUTOSAR Classic Platform is that it allows for modular development. This means that different teams can work on separate software components simultaneously without affecting others. Additionally, this modular approach enables easier testing, debugging, maintenance, and updates throughout a vehicle’s lifecycle.

By adhering to the AUTOSAR Classic Platform standards, automakers can reduce development time while improving software quality and scalability. Moreover, it promotes interoperability among various electronic control units (AUTOSAR ECU) in a vehicle network.

Its benefits include reduced development time, easier integration, maintenance, and updates, and improved overall software quality.

AUTOSAR Adaptive Platform

AUTOSAR Adaptive Platform is a cutting-edge technology that has been making waves in the automotive industry. This platform offers advanced features and functionalities to meet the ever-evolving demands of modern vehicles. So, what exactly is AUTOSAR Adaptive Platform?

In simple terms, it is an open software architecture that allows for flexible and scalable development of automotive systems. Unlike its predecessor, AUTOSAR Classic Platform, the Adaptive Platform focuses on next-generation vehicles with high-performance computing capabilities.

Why Adaptive Platform?

The key advantage of AUTOSAR Adaptive Platform lies in its ability to support real-time applications and dynamic updates. It enables seamless integration of new features without compromising safety or security. With this platform, automakers can easily develop innovative solutions such as autonomous driving systems or connected car technologies.

Another noteworthy aspect of the adaptive platform is its modular architecture. It provides a framework for building complex software components that can be easily reused across different vehicle platforms. This modularity not only enhances development efficiency but also simplifies maintenance and reduces costs.

Moreover, AUTOSAR Adaptive Platform promotes interoperability among various electronic control units (ECUs) within a vehicle system. This means that different ECUs from multiple suppliers can communicate with each other effectively, leading to better overall performance and functionality.

By embracing AUTOSAR Adaptive Platform, automakers can future-proof their vehicles and stay ahead in the rapidly evolving automotive landscape. The flexibility, scalability, and interoperability offered by this platform are essential for harnessing emerging technologies like artificial intelligence (AI), machine learning (ML), and internet of things (IoT).

AUTOSAR Architecture

The AUTOSAR Architecture is divided into three main layers: Basic Software (BSW), Runtime Environment (RTE), and Application Layer. Each layer has its own specific functions and responsibilities.

At the bottom layer is the BSW, which provides essential services such as communication management, memory management, and diagnostic functionality. It acts as a foundation for building higher-level components.

Above the BSW is the RTE layer that manages inter-component communication within the system. It handles data exchange between different software modules while ensuring real-time performance and resource optimization.

At the topmost layer is the Application Layer where specific functionalities are implemented. This layer includes application-specific software components that interact with both lower layers to provide end-user features like driver assistance systems or infotainment applications.

Basic Software Architecture (BSW)

Basic Software Architecture (BSW) is a crucial component of the AUTOSAR framework that plays a vital role in ensuring the smooth functioning of automotive systems. It serves as an interface between the application layer and the underlying hardware, providing standardized services and functions that enable seamless communication and coordination within the system.

At its core, BSW consists of various software modules or components, each responsible for specific tasks such as communication management, memory management, diagnostic services, and I/O handling. These modules are designed to be highly modular and reusable across different automotive platforms, allowing for easier development and integration of applications.

One key advantage of BSW is its ability to abstract hardware dependencies. This means that developers can focus on writing application code without worrying about low-level details related to specific hardware configurations. With BSW taking care of these complexities, developers can save time and effort while ensuring compatibility with multiple hardware platforms.

Another important aspect of BSW is its emphasis on standardization. By adhering to AUTOSAR guidelines and specifications, automotive manufacturers can achieve interoperability between different software components from various suppliers. This promotes collaboration among industry stakeholders and facilitates faster innovation cycles in the automotive sector.

Basic Software Architecture (BSW) forms an integral part of the AUTOSAR framework by providing a standardized platform for developing robust and scalable automotive software solutions. Its modular nature, hardware abstraction capabilities, and adherence to industry standards make it an essential tool for achieving efficient system integration in modern vehicles.

Runtime Environment (RTE Layer)

The AUTOSAR Runtime Environment (RTE Layer) is a crucial component in the AUTOSAR architecture. It acts as a communication hub between the Basic Software Layer and the Application Layer. Its main function is to enable seamless interaction and exchange of data between these two layers.

At its core, the RTE layer manages inter-ECU communication, making it possible for different components within an ECU to interact with each other. This allows for flexibility in designing automotive systems, as it becomes easier to integrate new functionalities or modify existing ones without disrupting the entire system.

The RTE layer also provides services such as message routing and event handling, ensuring that data reaches its intended destination efficiently. By abstracting away low-level details of inter-component communication, developers can focus on implementing their application logic rather than dealing with complex communication protocols.

Furthermore, the RTE layer plays a significant role in optimizing resource utilization by managing shared resources among software components. It helps prevent conflicts and ensures efficient use of memory and processing power.

The AUTOSAR Runtime Environment (RTE Layer) serves as a vital intermediary between the Basic Software Layer and Application Layer in an automotive system. Its ability to facilitate seamless communication and manage resources greatly contributes to overall system reliability and efficiency.

Application Layer

The Application Layer is a crucial component of the AUTOSAR architecture in the automotive industry. It serves as the interface between the software application and the underlying system infrastructure.

In this layer, developers can create and configure their applications according to their specific requirements. They have access to various modules like communication services, diagnostic services, and hardware abstraction.

One of the key benefits of using AUTOSAR’s Application Layer is its ability to support functional safety standards such as ISO 26262 through standardized interfaces and encapsulation mechanisms. This ensures that safety-critical applications can be developed with a high level of reliability and integrity.

Moreover, by leveraging the Application Layer, OEMs (Original Equipment Manufacturers) can achieve greater flexibility in managing software variations across different vehicle models or platforms. This means that they can reuse existing software components more efficiently, reducing development costs and time-to-market for new features.

Additionally, the Application Layer enables seamless integration with other layers of AUTOSAR architecture such as Basic Software Architecture (BSW) and Runtime Environment (RTE), allowing for efficient intercommunication between different software modules within a vehicle’s electronic control unit (ECU).

By utilizing AUTOSAR’s Application Layer, automakers can streamline their development processes while ensuring compatibility with industry standards and achieving higher levels of performance and safety in their vehicles’ software systems.

Why adopt AUTOSAR standard?

In today’s rapidly evolving automotive industry, the use of AUTOSAR standard has become crucial for automakers and suppliers alike. By adopting AUTOSAR, companies can benefit from a standardized approach to software development, which ultimately leads to increased efficiency, reduced costs, and improved quality.

One of the key advantages of using AUTOSAR is its ability to promote collaboration among different stakeholders in the automotive ecosystem. With a common language and architecture defined by the standard, engineers from various domains can seamlessly work together on developing complex automotive systems. This not only enhances communication but also fosters innovation within the industry.

Furthermore, AUTOSAR provides an extensive set of features and functionalities that simplify software development processes. The modular nature of the platform allows for easy integration and reusability of software components across different vehicle models or manufacturers. This significantly reduces time-to-market for new products while maintaining high levels of reliability and safety.

Moreover, with increasing demands for connectivity and advanced driver assistance systems (ADAS), AUTOSAR enables seamless integration with emerging technologies such as IoT devices or cloud-based services. By leveraging this standardized framework, automakers can efficiently develop connected vehicles that meet consumer expectations for enhanced functionality without compromising on security or performance.

Adherence to AUTOSAR standards ensures compliance with regulatory requirements in various regions around the world. As governments tighten regulations related to functional safety and cybersecurity in automobiles, having a robust framework like AUTOSAR becomes essential to ensure legal compliance while delivering safe vehicles to customers.

In conclusion, adopting AUTOSAR brings numerous benefits for both automakers and suppliers operating in today’s dynamic automotive landscape. From streamlined collaboration among stakeholders to accelerated product development cycles – all underpinned by enhanced security measures – embracing this standard empowers companies with a competitive edge in delivering innovative solutions that meet customer demands while adhering to stringent industry regulations.

So if you are looking to stay ahead in the ever-evolving automotive industry, embracing AUTOSAR is a step in the right direction. By leveraging this powerful platform, companies can unlock the full potential of their software development teams while ensuring compliance with industry regulations.

Mobile Trends & Technology


Polish mobile apps that have revolutionized the market

Mobile applications are a rapidly growing sector in terms of both competencies and technological solutions. The Polish market is one of the leading suppliers here – in 2022, as many as 14% of those developing mobile applications on the European market come from Poland. Among the applications being developed, there is no shortage of solutions […]

Bartłomiej Lewandowski

FInTech Trends & Technology


Top 10 UAE-based fintechs to keep an eye on in 2024

The UAE is a financial and technology basin, so, unsurprisingly, the area is rife with innovative Fintechs. By boldly introducing, even pioneering, innovative solutions, UAE-based companies are revolutionizing the way people manage their finances, make payments or invest.  We have prepared a list of 10 UEA-based Fintechs that are introducing new technologies, and changing the […]

Michał Stawski

Team building Trends & Technology


Top reasons to consider IT Outsourcing in Poland

Developing technology projects with developers from around the world is a common practice. However, you are facing the question – which country to choose? One of the most appreciated sources of talent for worldwide businesses is Poland. The ICT sector in Poland is noticed and appreciated by the world’s biggest rankings and investors. Find out […]

Michał Stawski

Describe your needs in simple terms, our team will contact you for a quote. We can also conduct a workshop to get you closer to the end result.

Let's work together

Contact Us