Mobility Solutions

Bosch Compact Parking assistance systems Safe, stress-free parking and maneuvering

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  • September 10, 2013
  • Mobility Solutions
  • Press releases
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press release

For many drivers, parking is often very stressful. Ever less room to maneuver, tighter spaces, and frantic traffic conditions make it an increasingly difficult task. Parking, and the maneuvering that goes with it, is also still a risky undertaking. An analysis of accident data from the AZT, a German accident research institute, shows that roughly half of all traffic accidents in Germany involving vehicle damage are a result of collisions while parking. This is where parking assistance systems can help. They help drivers park and maneuver their cars safely and comfortably. Bosch is a leading supplier in this segment.

Parking aid: better overview while parking
The Bosch parking aid offers help in situations where every centimeter counts. Using sensors integrated into the vehicle's bumper, the system monitors the area immediately ahead of and behind the vehicle, and recognizes obstacles in good time. Just like bats, sensors send out ultrasound signals and pick up their echo. The system uses the time difference between these two signals to calculate the distance between the vehicle and obstacle, which it can do from up to 2.5 meters away. Depending on the type of car and system, it either sounds an alarm or combines an alarm with a visual warning signal to the driver. In the alarm-only version, the distance is indicated with a progressive tone alert which increases in frequency the closer the car gets to an obstacle, finally becoming continuous. Optical-acoustic systems start by visually indicating the vehicle's proximity to an obstacle using LED displays or an on-screen image, and accompany this with an alarm when the car gets too close (approximately 30 centimeters or less). This way, even the tightest parking spaces no longer present a problem. The parking aid can prevent annoying and costly repairs for damage caused while parking. In most cases, it pays for itself with the first collision it prevents.

Parking assistant: like being guided on rails
Unsuccessful parking attempts are frustrating and nerve-wracking. The Bosch parking assistant gets drivers into any suitable parking space within seconds – without any stress or hassle. A special sensor integrated into the side of the front bumper scans the side of the road as the car drives past. The parking assistant lets the driver know immediately when it finds a suitable parallel or perpendicular space. If the driver presses the button to activate the parking assistant, the system takes just fractions of a second to calculate the optimum path into the space, the necessary steering movements, and the number of maneuvers needed. Then the parking assistant takes control: the driver lets go of the steering wheel and controls the parking maneuver by carefully accelerating and braking. With the support of electric power steering, the assistant performs all the steering movements and guides the vehicle into even the tightest of spaces – as though it were on rails. The driver remains in control throughout, and can abort the maneuver at any time by simply taking hold of the steering wheel. In addition, the assistant also helps with pulling out of the parking space. It steers the car into a position from which the driver can safely and quickly pull out of the space. The driver keeps an eye on traffic, and brakes or accelerates as directed by the system.

Automatic parking assistant: perfect parking in tight spaces – with no one at the wheel
In 2015, the Bosch automatic parking assistant will have its market debut. The system enables fully-automatic parking into and out of selected parking spaces. Drivers are free to focus solely on controlling the process. They decide if they want to remain in the car or get out ahead of time. Even spaces so tight that the car doors will barely open will soon be no hindrance. In this case, drivers can get out of their car in front of the selected space and start the parking maneuver remotely, for example by pressing a button on their car key or smartphone. The vehicle then parks and pulls itself out of the space on its own, without the need for anyone at the wheel. To interrupt the maneuver, the driver simply takes their finger off the button.

Reversing camera system: a new perspective on parking
Many modern vehicles offer the driver only a limited view of the car's surroundings. Ever smaller side and rear windows, combined with a vehicle shape that is strongly influenced by aerodynamics and pedestrian protection, is making safe and precise maneuvering more and more difficult, if not practically impossible. The Bosch reversing camera system helps drivers when reversing. A live camera image in the radio or navigation system's display shows the area directly behind the vehicle. This “third eye” is automatically activated when reverse gear is engaged. The driver can see on the display in real time whether the way is clear. What the camera cannot do is show the area around the vehicle's corners or supply precise information on distance. For this reason, Bosch combines camera technology with ultrasound-based parking assistance. These technologies complement each other perfectly: for example, distances measured by the ultrasound sensors are displayed as colored bars in the live camera image. This means all relevant information is available to the driver at a glance.

Outlook: multi-camera systems and valet parking
Bosch is already working on multi-camera systems that are able to present drivers with a distortion-free, high-quality bird's-eye view of their car and its direct surroundings. In a next step, the video systems will not only be able to show the pictures they record, but also interpret them. Intelligent camera systems will analyze the video sequences. If they detect obstacles and moving objects in the vicinity of the car, they will warn the driver, or where there is an acute risk of collision, intervene – for example by braking quickly.

In the future, “valet parking” solutions will completely relieve drivers of the time-consuming search for parking spaces and the irksome tasks of parking and pulling out. The vehicle will receive information on any free parking spaces in a parking lot or garage at the start of the journey. The driver will then stop the car at the entrance and get out. After the function has been activated, the vehicle will drive itself to the designated parking space, and when requested by the driver, also drive itself back out to a designated pick-up spot.

Bosch ultrasound sensors: identical and cost-effective
For all these ultrasound-based functions, Bosch uses identical, cost-effective sensors. The Bosch scalable platform concept offers automakers maximum flexibility – systems solutions can be precisely tailored to individual vehicles. A highly integrated ASIC control unit enables functions to be easily integrated into a central control unit, or alternatively into a smaller, stand-alone control unit.

Bosch close-range camera: small and powerful
Bosch uses the latest CMOS (complementary metal oxide semiconductor) technology for its cameras, which delivers outstanding image quality even in high-contrast or low-light situations. To capture the largest possible area, Bosch uses cameras with a 180-degree angle of view. The inevitable fish-eye distortion is corrected optically and/or by applying a powerful algorithm. The driver thus sees a natural and easy-to-comprehend representation of the car's immediate surroundings.

Bosch: 20 years of experience with parking functions
1989: Bosch begins developing ultrasound sensors for monitoring the parking space ahead of and behind vehicles.
1993: Ford Germany launches the first Bosch parking system on the market – as an optional feature for the Ford Scorpio.
1994: Mercedes-Benz installs the second generation of sensors in its S class.
1997: General Motors is the first U.S. automaker to order Bosch ultrasound sensors.
2006: Bosch develops the world's first parking assistant to measure the length of parking spaces. It debuts in the Citroen C4 Picasso.
2008: The first Bosch semi-automatic parking assistant for vehicles with electrical power steering debuts in the Mercedes A and B classes.
2010: The Bosch side-view assistant is the world's first ultrasound-based blind-spot recognition function, and expands the company's ultrasound-based product portfolio to include maneuver assistance functions.
2011: Bosch launches the second generation of its parking assistant. One feature it offers is improved parallel parking. The new pull-out assistant also steers the car backward and forward in the parking space until it can drive off safely in one maneuver. It offers a new perpendicular parking assistant as well, which can drive the vehicle into parking spaces at a right angle to the direction of travel.

More information online:
Driver assistance systems
Sensors for automotive electronics
Sensors for consumer electronics
Sensors – how technology maps the world around it
MEMS: the stars of the sensor world

Automatic parking assistant
Automatic parking assistant (footage)
Perpendicular parking assistant
Side view assistant

Click here to find further information.

At the 65th International Motor Show in Frankfurt, Bosch is showcasing technical solutions for connected mobility. A variety of innovations are helping to make road traffic cleaner and more efficient, as well as safer and more comfortable. Bosch is exhibiting its highlights at booth A04 in hall 8.

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,

PI8269 - September 10, 2013

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