Vehicle manufacturer Lotus and smart mobility company Ecarx have selected Here Technologies to deliver its integrated navigation services to the OEM’s new all-electric hyper-SUV, the Eletre.
Here Navigation is a software-as-a-service, cloud-native navigation solution for connected vehicles. It enables online and offline search, real-time traffic and turn-by-turn voice guidance. Both Lotus and Ecarx are using the Here Software Development Kit (SDK) to enable the integration of the Here Navigation technology with Lotus’s Hyper OS mobile application for end-to-end navigation. The solution can also be updated over the air to ensure maps are always up to date.
Through the use of Here Navigation, Lotus is also reducing range anxiety by offering EV Routing, EV Range Assistant and Predictive Routing through Here’s in-car solution. The EV Routing has been optimized for the Eletre’s battery consumption to ensure the best route is chosen with the least number of stops for charging. Range Assistant takes into account topography, geometry, and historical and real-time traffic data to calculate range and vehicle routes.
Ecarx develops digital cockpit head unit specifically for the Lotus Eletre
The Here Navigation system runs on Ecarx’s digital cockpit head unit, which was developed specifically for the Eletre. It is claimed to be the first digital cockpit to run a dual system on a chip, improving processing speeds to enable the use of multiple applications simultaneously.
The Ecarx digital head unit is hosted on an advanced driver information module (DIM) and uses a 15.1in ultra-slim floating OLED touchscreen. The display, powered by the Unreal computer graphics game engine, delivers fully customizable displays and realistic graphics to vehicle occupants. The system uses Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 8155 chipset with 12GB RAM, 128GB of storage and 7nm processors.
The dual-chip setup uses a master chip for driving information functions such as the instrument display, the head-up display, a 360° camera and additional safety features. A second chip is responsible for running infotainment functions. Furthermore, it also carries a single MCU chip and Ecarx’s self-developed software stack.
“Lotus and Here combine the full capabilities of a connected navigation system together with the unique Lotus digital user experience to deliver a world-class navigation solution,” said Serino Angellotti, senior chief engineer at the Lotus Tech Innovation Centre. “For its first electric SUV, Lotus would settle for nothing but the best, and with Here Technologies on board, we offer our customers the best of both worlds while having the flexibility to design and manage the driving experience ourselves. We look forward to continuously updating our vehicles over the air, always providing our drivers with the freshest navigation experience.”
“We are proud that Lotus and Ecarx have chosen Here Navigation for the launch of their first electric high-performance SUV, the most technically advanced Lotus ever,” said Fred Hessabi, executive vice president and chief customer officer of Here Technologies. “Lotus Eletre is the first vehicle in Europe to have access to such an extensive range of features that will help make EV anxiety a thing of the past. By choosing Here Navigation with EV and Predictive Routing as well as EV Range Assistant, Lotus is setting new standards in innovation when it comes to navigation.”
“By working in close collaboration with Lotus from the earliest stage of the Lotus Eletre’s development cycle, Ecarx has delivered an advanced digital head unit that can support a range of applications designed to continuously improve the customer experience over time,” said Ziyu Shen, chairman and chief executive of Ecarx. “The integration of Here Navigation demonstrates the flexibility of the system to incorporate a range of driver services.”