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HELLA Launches Digital Car Key With UWB Technology

In addition to the vehicle access, access authorization can also be managed and shared. To activate additional functionalists, personalizable information can be stored in the smartphone as well. PHOTO HELLA

The automotive supplier HELLA is consolidating its market position in the field of solutions for vehicle access.

In this context, HELLA Smart Car Access, which is based on ultra-wideband (UWB) technology, will go into series production for the first time within the next two years.

This digital, smartphone-based car key from HELLA not only offers convenience for the end-user, as it enables completely hands-free vehicle access; it also meets the highest safety standards. The first to be supplied is an international car manufacturer.

The principle

With HELLA Smart Car Access, end users can lock and unlock their cars completely hands-free and can also start the engine without having to pick up a classic remote key or a smartphone.

From a distance of 50 metres, the mobile device is automatically detected and recognized by the vehicle. As soon as the driver approaches within two metres of the car, it is unlocked.

The engine itself can only be started when the smartphone is inside the vehicle.

At the same time, access authorizations to the vehicle can be digitally managed and shared on the basis of the HELLA Smart Car Access system, e.g. for car-sharing services or for fleet providers.

Personalizable information can also be stored in the smartphone to activate additional comfort or individualization features, such as functions enabling welcome or interior lighting.

“HELLA manufactures around 25 million classic remote keys per year for a large number of reputable car manufacturers worldwide.” says Björn Twiehaus, the HELLA Managing Director responsible for the Electronics division.

“Building on our technology base, we are now taking the next step with our smartphone-based Smart Car Access by making vehicle access even smarter, more comfortable and more secure, thus taking it to a new level.”

In order to implement these Smart Car Access functions simply, reliably and safely, HELLA uses ultra-wideband technology.

This radio technology for near-field communication is used as a standard in new smartphones.

It is characterized by highly precise, centimetre-accurate locating and, furthermore, it prevents the danger of relay attacks, i.e. the unauthorized opening of a vehicle by remote extension.

At the same time, the technology ensures that HELLA’s system solution does not necessarily require an app and that it continues to function even in situations without a network or internet connection.

The system solution is compatible with both Android and iOS operating systems.

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june, 2021

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