"By 2008, more than 21% of all North American built vehicles will come with some form of stability enhancing system, a huge increase from just 3% in year 2000. During the same period, installation of ABS will increase by 19% and Traction Control Systems (TCS), an essential function of VDC, will increase by 84%." So noted Ray Schubert, Director of TIER ONE's Chassis Systems Group. Of total market, VDC/VSE is expected to exceed $1.5 billion in 2008.

TIER ONE's forthcoming report on vehicle stability systems reinforces the need for industry to provide new solutions to SUV and light truck safety issues. These systems provide greater levels of stability and directional control than Rear Wheel ABS (RW-ABS) and 4Wheel ABS (4W-ABS) systems currently found on most SUVs. At the heart of the issue is rollover. NHSTA research confirms that loss of directional control has been found to precede rollover in 50 to 80 percent of all rollover crashes. As a proportion, SUVs exceed all other classes of vehicles.

Examples of new stability systems include: Vehicle Dynamic Control (VDC) on the Mercedes M-class, which uses engine torque control combined with active brake control. Land Rover's Active Cornering Enhancement (ACE) is a suspension-based control system now available on the 2000 Discovery. The 2001 Subaru Outback will have a Variable Torque Distribution (VTD) system that balances engine torque to improve stability. And, GM's Quadrasteer, a Four-Wheel Steering system (4WS), that actively steers the rear wheels, will soon be available on GM trucks.

VDC, or brake based stability control, will continue to be the primary
system platform for VSE because of product maturity and integration of Anti- Lock Brakes and Traction Control Systems. This system strategy will prevail providing the best formula for future Brake-by-Wire control.

TIER ONE's new reports on vehicle stability systems provides an extensive analysis of the developing market, the suppliers and the programs of automakers moving to adopt these new technologies.

For more information on this subject and other reports, visit the TIER ONE Web site at www.tierone.com