Today, driving a car without power steering would feel almost like a workout. Power steering has made driving a pleasurable experience for consumers, as it offers light and precise steering and a well-balanced feel behind the wheel. The ease of driving offered by electronic power steering (EPS) systems has made it a favorite among consumers worldwide.
Currently, the power steering system sector in the automotive electronics control unit management (ECU/ECM) market holds the largest market share. Power steering is a standard feature provided in all car segments such as passenger cars, utility vehicles, and commercial vehicles. Due to its increasing demand, the EPS sector is expected to continue its dominance in the automotive electronics control unit management market.
By technology, the global automotive electronics control unit management (ECU/ECM) market is segmented into transmission control system, body control system, airbag restraint system, power steering system, climate control system, anti-lock braking system, and engine management system.
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Automakers and their R&D Initiatives Offering Fuel-efficient EPS
As power steering holds a dominant share in the automotive electronics control unit management (ECU/ECM) market, companies in this industry are focusing on providing more innovative EPS products. Several automakers, along with component manufacturers, are progressively investing in R&D projects to enhance their product line and offer innovations that would reduce carbon emission levels. The availability of fuel-efficient steering is attracting consumers to the EPS segment of the automotive electronics control unit management (ECU/ECM) market.
Consumers Love Lightweight Steering Wheels and Prefer Energy-saving EPS
Several key players in the global automotive electronics control unit management (ECU/ECM) market are providing power steering systems that are lightweight and consume less power. In addition to this, the increasing implementation of regulations by countries around the world to control vehicle emissions is also adding to the demand for energy-saving EPS. The benefit of the greater fuel economy of modern EPS-fitted cars is more compared to that of hydraulic steering-fitted cars.
The EPS system in the new Chrysler 300c, for instance, only takes up around 1.5% of the car’s total fuel consumption, as it consumes less energy compared to a belt-driven pump. The Mazda CX-3’s steering is light, yet direct, which makes driving it comfortable. Recently, Nexteer Automotive also introduced a new cost-effective brush electric power steering system.
Summing up the key features of electronic power steering (EPS) systems, such as their ease while driving, light weight, well-balanced feel, and fuel efficiency will continue to add to their demand. Furthermore, these are the same factors that players in the global automotive electronics control unit management (ECU/ECM) market will focus on providing in new product innovations to attract more consumers.
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However, one of the major issues that manufacturers of EPS systems need to grapple with is the rising cost of raw materials. Moreover, the future of steering systems, i.e. steer-by-wire technology, is a burning issue for firms operating in the global automotive electronics control unit management (ECU/ECM) market. Steering systems based on these technologies are more expensive as they are more complex to develop. Additionally, such systems can be hacked and their functions can be disabled or controlled by wireless connections. Eliminating these challenges hampering the latest advances in the industry remains the primary challenge for industry players.