ZF-TRW deal could be the “brainchild” of autonomous era image

Analysts, experts, automakers and lawmakers are all calling for the dawn of the autonomous drive era, and the advent of the needed revolution could have already spawned its first offsprings.

One important example we have at hand is the enormous – $13.5 billion (including debt) deal – between Germany’s ZF Friedrichshafen and TRW Automotive. The latter would now become a subsidiary in one of the largest supplier purchases ever. Such is the magnitude of the acquisition, that ZF practically jumped its way into second place, second globally only to another German company – Robert Bosch GMBH.

“There is a race among the automakers to be first to market with automated highway driving,” said Andy Whydell, TRW’s head of product planning for global electronics.

“This is a big opportunity for us,” adds ZF CEO Stefan Sommer. “We are playing in a new league here. This opens markets for us in a worldwide competition among two or three companies.”

The reason is one and it’s utterly complex in its simplicity – self-driving cars. For now, Bosch, Continental and Denso seemed to have the upper hand in providing the much-needed systems for the autonomous cars to be secure and functional. Now, the ZF-TRW conglomerate has pushed its way into the game, as automakers and technology companies alike push relentlessly towards the cars of the future that will drive themselves or at least communicate with each other and the surroundings (and most likely, both).

Via Automotive News