Automotive radar market attracting new players

Automotive radar market attracting new players

This market growth will come from 4D and imaging radar.

“The first commercial automotive radar was introduced in 2000 for Daimler and BMW cars,” says Yole’s Cédric Malaquin, “during 2020 and 2021, leading radar suppliers launched their 5th-generation radars. Modern automotive radar sensors inherit from this longstanding evolution cycle. Up to now, the upgrades mainly focused on cost and form factor optimization, which explains the trend towards integration that the industry has pursued.” 

Besides integration, RF performance has improved over time. Initially, radars operated with analogue beamforming and mechanical steering before moving to digital beamforming (full scene illumination).

In the digital beamforming era, MIMO techniques have been introduced, enabling an increase of the virtual antenna aperture while maintaining a reasonable physical size. 

Currently, MIMO scaling is offered by the industry (from 0.2k to 2k pixels) as the baseline for achieving sub-1° angular resolution for imaging radars. 

This comes with new challenges needing to be overcome on the signal processing and computing side, which explains why the focus is shifting towards deep learning and artificial intelligence. 

The automotive radar market has drawn increasing interest over the past few years. At the system level, the market is led by six major Tier 1s: Continental, Bosch, Hella, Denso, Aptiv, and Veoneer. 

At the silicon level, NXP and Infineon share most of the market. 

New players are gaining design wins, either at the system level with Magna, Mobis, Weifu, etc., or at the silicon level with Arbe, Uhnder, and Vayyar.