Trends in Automotive Technology Bosch working to make environmental protection and accident prevention affordable everywhere Fuel economy and safety a central focus of technological development

  • Bosch in India: sales of 110 billion rupees in 2011; investments of 22 billion rupees between 2012 and 2013
  • Bosch Group sales likely to have topped 50 billion euros in 2011
  • Automotive Technology sector sales expected to have reached 30 billion euros
  • Around 3.3 billion euros invested in research and development for automotive technology in 2011
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  • January 04, 2012
  • Business/economy
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“Over the past two years, the world economy and the global automotive industry have bounced back from a major economic crisis,” said Bernd Bohr, Chairman of the Bosch Automotive Group, at the 2012 New Delhi Auto Expo today. In 2011, political and economic developments have given rise to new uncertainties. “In the midst of all this, India's economy has continued to develop strongly, and is expected to see steady growth in the coming years.”

Today, there are 12 cars per 1,000 inhabitants in India. Bosch expects this number to increase more than threefold by 2025. This year alone, automotive production growth in India will be between 10 and 12 percent. In contrast, the number of vehicles produced globally is expected to increase by three to five percent in 2012.

Strong growth despite new uncertainties
Against this backdrop, the Bosch Group remains confident that its sales topped 50 billion euros in 2011, up from 47.3 billion euros in 2010. In Automotive Technology, Bohr expects a business volume of over 30 billion euros, compared with 28.1 billion euros in 2010. In 2011, Bosch spent around 3.3 billion euros on research and development in automotive technology alone.

Bosch’s growth in 2011 is also reflected in its global workforce. By the end of the year, the Bosch Group’s headcount had grown by 15,000, bringing associate numbers to about 300,000. In the Automotive Group, headcount grew by some 10,000, to around 177,000.

In India, Bosch sales in 2011 amounted to some 110 billion rupees, 15 billion rupees more than the previous year. The number of associates working for Bosch in India also grew to 25,000, around 4,000 more than at the start of 2011. The company expects to have about 32,000 associates in India by the end of 2013.

Bosch in India: investing to expand local presence
In view of this growth, Bosch plans to continue expanding its presence in India. “For Bosch, increasing investment and strengthening our presence here are natural and necessary steps. Between 2012 and 2013, the Bosch Group plans to invest some 22 billion rupees in India,” said Bohr.

Most of these funds will go into further expanding the company’s local activities. For instance, Bosch is currently building a new plant for electrical drives in Chennai, which will begin operations in 2012. In addition, Bosch experts in India are playing an increasingly important role in the company’s worldwide software engineering activities for electronic control units. In fact, over 800 engineers were recently recruited in Bangalore and Coimbatore to further strengthen the Bosch global team. Their development work will focus on ECUs for vehicles with conventional drivetrain technologies, as well as hybrid and electric vehicles.
The Bosch InterCampus program is another major investment which reflects the company’s lasting commitment to India. Launched in the spring of 2011, the initiative aims to drive forward academic research in the areas of environment, energy, and mobility. Over a period of ten years, Bosch will contribute some 320 crore rupees (50 million euros) to support research activities at universities in India, China, Germany, and the United States.

Some 140 crore rupees (23 million euros), almost half of the total investment, will support educational and research initiatives in India. Most of this sum will go toward the “Robert Bosch IISc Center for Research in Cyber Physical Systems”, which was inaugurated in November 2011. Located at the Indian Institute of Science in Bangalore, its activities focus on cyber-physical systems, mobility solutions, and renewable energy.

The company’s activities in India reflect a global Bosch Group strategy: by drawing on regional strengths, Bosch has built a worldwide network of specialists who benefit from each others’ know-how and market intelligence. At 50 development centers in all of the world’s major economic regions, Bosch engineers work in diverse international teams which develop specific solutions for emerging economies and established markets.

As the leading global automotive supplier, Bosch is in an excellent position to support Indian OEMs in all of their endeavors, both in India and in global markets. Bosch Automotive Technology continues to strengthen its presence particularly in the Asian growth regions. “Today, Asia is home to 10,000 of our global total of 29,000 engineers,” said Bohr. In India alone, some 6,300 engineers work for Bosch automotive businesses at 13 manufacturing sites and four development centers.

Technologies developed in the region, for the region
With the development of Asia’s emerging economies, demand for small, low-cost vehicles will continue to grow. In response to this trend, Bosch continues to develop affordable technologies that meet local needs. The company already supplies its Indian customers with an adapted version of its common rail system, which enhances fuel economy in the low-cost segment. The system helps meet Bharat 3 norms, and Bosch is working to increase injection pressures to meet future emissions standards. What is more, the ZF Steering Systems joint venture recently entered into an agreement with Tata to supply locally produced electric power steering systems for several of the carmaker’s vehicle models.

Technologies such as the Value Motronic engine management platform, which was developed for emerging markets in cooperation with Indian engineers, have also had a positive influence on the Bosch Group's global product development activities. “We have gained valuable insights into how Bosch technologies can be made more cost-effective across the board,” Bohr said.

As the number of cars on the world's roads increases, the importance of safety has also grown. Driven by legislation for newly registered vehicles, the safety systems which Bosch brought to market first are seeing rises in their installation rates. By 2015, 90 percent of all new vehicles worldwide will be fitted with the ABS antilock braking system, up from 75 percent in 2010. In India, ABS is currently featured in about 13 percent of locally sold vehicles. Bosch is in a strong position to support Indian OEMs in meeting the growing demand for safety systems. The company produces some 300,000 ABS systems per year at its facility in Chakan, Pune, and is the only automotive supplier that manufactures ABS in India. In addition to ABS for passenger cars, Bosch also offers an affordable ABS system for two wheelers, which has already made a significant contribution to improving motorcycle safety worldwide.

Besides making its automotive technologies accessible and affordable everywhere, Bosch is continuously improving its products to make driving even cleaner, safer, and more economical. According to Bohr, this approach is in line with the company’s strategic imperative “Invented for life”.

Continuously improving existing technologies
Using a broad range of technical measures, Bosch will reduce the fuel consumption of both diesel and gasoline engines by another 30 percent. The turbocharging of downsized engines is an important example, and the main focus of the Bosch Mahle Turbo Systems joint venture. Such technologies comply with ever-tightening fuel economy and emission standards and contribute to the success of economical direct injection and port-fuel injection systems. Bosch plans to sell some seven million gasoline direct injection systems in 2013 – three times as many as in 2010. Over the same period, sales of its common-rail diesel-injection systems are set to rise from nine million units per year to over twelve million units.

Enhancing existing technology is only half the challenge for Bosch. “We must also respond to new technological demands, for instance in the transition to electromobility,” said Bohr.

Paving the road to e-mobility
Bosch invests some 400 million euros annually in e-mobility and offers a full portfolio of products, from motors and power electronics to auxiliary systems. With its joint venture for lithium-ion batteries, Bosch is working to increase the range and reduce the cost of this key component. Bosch has already achieved a number of goals on the way to powertrain electrification. By 2013, the supplier will be delivering to 21 projects for 13 automakers. Today, Bosch technologies are already featured in Porsche, Volkswagen, and Peugeot vehicles.

While Bohr does not expect a major shift toward purely electric driving until the middle of the next decade, he anticipates that transitional solutions will likely be accepted before then. He thus expects good opportunities for the plug-in hybrid, whose battery can be charged simply from a wall socket. While its all-electric range is sufficient for day-to-day urban trips, its diesel or gasoline engine makes greater distances possible. Bohr also sees strong potential for small e-vehicles, especially in megacities.

Driver assistance and vehicle networking: gaining significance in established markets
In the coming years, complex driver assistance systems based on radar and video sensors will make the vision of accident-free, autonomous driving reality. Bosch has dedicated more than 600 engineers to further developing technologies in this field. At the same time, the company is also working to improve vehicle networking technologies, which are becoming an important purchasing factor for the internet generation.

While demand for driver assistance systems and internet-based mobility solutions is currently concentrated in established markets, Bosch companies in India are making an important contribution to developments in these areas, too. With some 9,700 associates, Robert Bosch Engineering Services and Business Solutions provides a full range of software for automotive electronics applications, and has customers in all of the world's major economic regions.

In his closing words, Bohr said that Bosch activities in India clearly demonstrate the importance of drawing on regional strengths. “Our strong global presence has enabled us to cope with an increasingly volatile business environment. And our deep local roots have helped us establish lasting partnerships with our Indian customers,” Bohr said. Partnerships for innovation between producers and suppliers have always depended on reliability. In an uncertain world, Bohr said, this has become even more important.

Mobility Solutions is the largest Bosch Group business sector. In 2015, its sales came to 41.7 billion euros, or 59 percent of total group sales. This makes the Bosch Group one of the leading automotive suppliers. The Mobility Solutions business sector combines the group’s expertise in three mobility domains – automation, electrification, and connectivity – and offers its customers integrated mobility solutions. Its main areas of activity are injection technology and powertrain peripherals for internal-combustion engines, diverse solutions for powertrain electrification, vehicle safety systems, driver-assistance and automated functions, technology for user-friendly infotainment as well as vehicle-to-vehicle and vehicle-to-infrastructure communication, repair-shop concepts, and technology and services for the automotive aftermarket. Bosch is synonymous with important automotive innovations, such as electronic engine management, the ESP anti-skid system, and common-rail diesel technology.

The Bosch Group is a leading global supplier of technology and services. It employs roughly 375,000 associates worldwide (as of December 31, 2015). The company generated sales of 70.6 billion euros in 2015. Its operations are divided into four business sectors: Mobility Solutions, Industrial Technology, Consumer Goods, and Energy and Building Technology. The Bosch Group comprises Robert Bosch GmbH and its roughly 440 subsidiaries and regional companies in some 60 countries. Including sales and service partners, Bosch’s global manufacturing and sales network covers some 150 countries. The basis for the company’s future growth is its innovative strength. Bosch employs 55,800 associates in research and development at 118 locations across the globe. The Bosch Group’s strategic objective is to deliver innovations for a connected life. Bosch improves quality of life worldwide with products and services that are innovative and spark enthusiasm. In short, Bosch creates technology that is “Invented for life.”

Further information is available online at and,

PI7621 - January 04, 2012

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