FORVIA HELLA receives further series orders for digital Smart Car Access system

March 7, 2024


The international automotive supplier FORVIA HELLA is further expanding its market position in the field of digital access systems with additional customer orders. Series production will start in Romania and Mexico in 2025; in this context, FORVIA HELLA will also bring the NCAP-relevant safety function "Child Presence Detection" based on ultra-wideband technology onto the streets for the first time.

The lead location for development is FORVIA HELLA's headquarters in Lippstadt (Germany); FORVIA HELLA's Berlin-based Global Software House is responsible for the artificial intelligence integrated into the system.


"The new customer orders underpin our leading position in the field of digital vehicle access," says Jörg Weisgerber, who is responsible for the global electronics business as a member of the Management Board at FORVIA HELLA. "This is where our many years of experience and expertise in this product area really pay off. Customers benefit from a powerful and cost-effective access system that is suitable for every type of vehicle."


NCAP-relevant safety function "Child Presence Detection" is being launched on the market for the first time on a UWB basis

The Smart Car Access system from FORVIA HELLA is based on ultra-wideband technology (UWB). The system allows the end user to open and close the car completely hands-free and start the engine without having to pick up their smartphone. The integrated UWB technology also protects the vehicle against relay attacks, i.e. the opening of a vehicle by radio extension, thanks to the high-precision runtime measurement.


System recognises children's slightest movements and breathing and informs left-behind children via smartphone

The customer projects also include the series development of the safety-relevant Child Presence Detection system. UWB anchors in the passenger compartment use vital signs such as breathing rate and movement patterns of the occupants to recognise whether children or infants have been left alone in the vehicle. If this is the case, parents or guardians receive an alert on their mobile device after just a few seconds. This is intended to prevent heatstroke and deaths of unattended children in parked cars.  In order to achieve the highest possible rating in the NCAP (New Car Assessment Program), all new vehicles in Europe and the USA must be equipped with such a system as standard from 2025. FORVIA HELLA will now bring this function to the market for the first time worldwide on a UWB basis.


New functions can be provided by means of software updates; higher cost efficiency and CO2 reduction by utilising already installed hardware

To implement the Child Presence Detection function, the UWB anchors of the Smart Car Access system already present in the vehicle can be used. In the latest product generation, the function can therefore be installed via a software update without the need for additional hardware – as is the case with comparable technological solutions. This can significantly reduce material, logistics and integration costs as well as CO2 emissions.


FORVIA HELLA successfully launched UWB technology in conventional access systems in 2019. Since then, the safety of this technology has been emphasised several times in independent tests. Here, too, it was shown that vehicles with FORVIA HELLA technology could not be opened via relay attacks.

Electronics Managing Director Jörg Weisgerber: "The development of Child Presence Detection shows how efficiently we can implement new end-user-relevant functionalities with our Smart Car Access system. We will also continue to work on adding new functions to the technology. The focus here will be on new solutions to prevent unauthorised access to the vehicle, for example, as well as new convenience functions such as hands-free opening of the boot."