Latest automotive interviews

just-auto uses its unrivalled access to the top industry executives to bring you interviews with the personalities shaping the news all year round.

Online car buying boom shows no signs of easing

30 Mar 2021 | Matthew Beecham

Although the pandemic has triggered a rise of online car buying activity, it confirms to some that latent demand was there all along and consumers just needed an easy-to-use, seamless system to make big ticket purchases. To learn more, we caught up with Tim Smith, Chief Commercial Officer at automotive eCommerce specialist, GForces.

Revving up for EVs - Q&A with Saietta

26 Mar 2021 | Matthew Beecham

Saietta has engineered a breakthrough in electric propulsion motors for all vehicles from scooters to buses. It recently received funding from the UK’s Advanced Propulsion Centre (APC) enabling them to fast-track the production process and create 250 jobs. To learn more, we spoke to Wicher Kist, CEO of Saietta.

Selling silence - transforming the cabin into a quiet bubble

23 Mar 2021 | Matthew Beecham

Israel-based Silentium has developed an active noise cancellation solution capable of lowering unwanted cabin noise peaks by 10dB and overall noise levels by 3-4dB – the equivalent of turning down the in-car sound system by four steps. JLR was the first carmaker to integrate this active acoustics software, installing it in the Jaguar F-Pace, XF and Range Rover Velar. To learn more about the whys and wherefores, Matthew Beecham had a quiet word with Anthony Manias, Head of Automotive, Silentium.

Transitioning from ICE to EV production – Q&A with ABB

17 Mar 2021 | Matthew Beecham

As the auto industry shifts from ICE power to EVs, manufacturers face opportunities and challenges on a number of levels. To learn more about the ins and outs, and how existing vehicle production lines can be adapted to suit, we spoke to Joerg Reger of robotics and automation specialist ABB.

Redesigning the automotive retail experience - Q&A with ZeroLight

25 Feb 2021 | Matthew Beecham

There are some in the auto industry who believe that the rise of digital solutions within the new car buying journey will lead to the ‘agency model’ approach, where dealers become ‘agents’ who act on behalf of the OEM, with sales conducted directly between the OEM and the customer. Among them is ZeroLight, a digital visual effects specialist based in the northeast of England which began life in the gaming industry. They are working with a number of established automakers, including Volkswagen (ID3), Audi (e-Tron), Cadillac, Pagani, Lamborghini, and new entrant Lucid Motors, in not only enabling online sales but also creating digital solutions that give people the confidence to know exactly what they are buying online. To learn more, we spoke to François de Bodinat, Chief Product Officer at ZeroLight.

Euro vision - Q&A with Apollo Vredestein

24 Feb 2021 | Matthew Beecham

Tyres remain a key technology within chassis engineering. Quite apart from the fact that vehicle grip and handling behaviour ultimately depends entirely on the physics and mechanics of what happens within the four tyre contact patches, the tyres also make significant contributions towards determining ride comfort, internal and external vehicle noise, and economy. Continuing just-auto/AIC’s series of interviews, we caught up with Daniele Lorenzetti, Chief Technology Officer for Apollo Tyres Ltd to learn more about some emerging trends in the European tyre market. Apollo Vredestein BV is the European subsidiary of Apollo Tyres Ltd and has its head office in Amsterdam, the Netherlands. The company manufactures and sells tyres under the Apollo and Vredestein brand name via a network of offices in Europe.

Riding high on coconut shells - Q&A with Carbon Air

15 Feb 2021 | Matthew Beecham

A British materials company is planning further growth of applications for its ‘activated carbon’ air suspension technology following its use on current-generation Audi A6 and A7 models. Activated carbon is formed from organic carbon matter, typically made up of stock like coconut shells or sawdust. To learn more, Matthew Beecham spoke to John Coakley, Carbon Air CTO.

Material matters - Challenges of casting EV and hybrid components

15 Feb 2021 | Matthew Beecham

As vehicles are developed to meet the low emissions targets set around the world, it isn’t just design and functionality which are being stretched: the materials that components are made from are under increasing pressure to perform. We spoke to Keith Denholm, engineering director at Grainger & Worrall (GW) to see how the industry is meeting the challenges posed by electrification, vehicle light-weighting and down-sizing. GW is a specialist in sand casting and metal technology, including metal additive manufacturing. In this interview, we learn more about the challenges of casting EV and hybrid components, such as electric drive units, where integration of several diverse systems leads to complex castings which need to withstand significant torque forces.

5G and the digital cockpit – Q&A with Harman

9 Feb 2021 | Matthew Beecham

Forget RPM, think EPM (Experiences Per Mile). As mobility shifts, the digital cockpit is evolving, offering vehicle occupants new safety and functional capabilities, along with experiences and entertainment options. During its maiden ExPLORE showcase last month, Harman illustrated how the digital cockpit of the future could deliver EPM through gaming, content creation and in-vehicle concert use cases. To learn more about these and the impact of 5G on the technology, Matthew Beecham caught up with Harman’s Kevin Markell, Senior Director Business Operations, Digital Cockpit SBU.

Driving the cockpit revolution – Q&A with Visteon CEO

18 Jan 2021 | Matthew Beecham

Forget what is under the hood, the battleground has shifted to what is inside the cockpit. Market leader Visteon has developed lots of cool new technologies to augment the cockpit electronics space, including large, curved, automotive-grade displays and its microZone technology that offers higher graphics performance than traditional LCD displays. To learn more, Matthew Beecham caught up with Sachin Lawande, President and CEO of Visteon.

Tomorrow’s cockpit – more connected, versatile and immersive

15 Jan 2021 | Matthew Beecham

A car interior must suit the owner’s lifestyle, yet also be functional and flexible. Connectivity between the vehicle, passengers and outside world is also key. Continuing just-auto/AIC’s series of interviews, Matthew Beecham caught up with Alexander van Laack, Vice President of Sales, FCA, Nissan, and New Entrants, Faurecia Clarion Electronics North America to consider some trends and technical advances in the cockpit arena. This interview is the second of two focussing on car interiors with the tier one component supplier.

Redefining car interiors – Q&A with Faurecia

14 Jan 2021 | Matthew Beecham

The driver and passenger experience is changing, with advanced technologies able to boost safety and reduce the load on the driver, as well as open up new possibilities for passengers. New business models will also play a role in the future vehicle interior. Continuing just-auto/AIC’s series of interviews, we spoke to Todd Fletemier, Vice President of R&D and Engineering – Midwest Technology Platform, Faurecia about shared mobility and the design implications for the interior. This interview is the first of two focusing on car interiors with the tier one component supplier.

VIRTUAL CES - Gentex’s digital vision

12 Jan 2021 | Matthew Beecham

The Consumer Electronics Show (CES) has gone digital this week, and so has Gentex. The tier one automotive supplier, best-known for its rearview mirror technologies, is using the virtual event to showcase a number of other innovations in dimmable glass systems, car connectivity, driver and cabin monitoring as well as advances in the medical field. To learn more, Matthew Beecham spoke to Craig Piersma, Director of Marketing & Corporate Communications for Gentex Corp.

System solutions for the software-defined car - Q&A with ZF

12 Jan 2021 | Matthew Beecham

The vehicle of the future will feature high levels of networking and automation defined by software, says ZF. But a ‘software-defined car’ is much more than a ‘smartphone on wheels’ even if the vehicle operation increasingly resembles that of a smartphone. The difference is the quality and quantity of hardware systems that need to be intelligently connected by a software platform to help move people comfortably and safely. To learn more during the first all-digital Consumer Electronics Show (CES), Matthew Beecham connected with Dr Dirk Walliser, Executive Vice President Corporate Research & Development, Innovation and Technology, ZF.

Intelligent cockpit systems - intuitive and interconnected, anticipating user needs

11 Jan 2021 | Matthew Beecham

Modern vehicles are already described as ‘supercomputers on wheels’, with the levels of compute and data generated by the auto industry set to dwarf almost any other. Intelligent cockpit systems will provide the interface for human-car interaction and the primary control hub for all day-to-day V2X communication. In the near future, a unified software and hardware platform will provide intelligent interaction and personalised services far beyond the capabilities of current electronic cockpit systems. Continuing just-auto/AIC’s series of interviews, Matthew Beecham caught up with Martin Maussner, Senior Director, Sales, Qualcomm CDMA Technologies GmbH to learn more about the role of intelligent cockpit platforms in tomorrow’s car.

Active valves for hybrid vehicle exhausts - Sounding out Tenneco

11 Jan 2021 | Matthew Beecham

Although hybrids are becoming more popular with manufacturers - the technology being a relatively simple, cost-effective way to meet regulation and customer demand for some level of electrification in their next vehicle, plus being easier to develop than a vehicle from scratch – the engineering presents significant issues in terms of packaging, managing heat transfer to other components and addressing the changes in sound when switching between different modes/source of power. Continuing just-auto/AIC’s series of interviews, we spoke to Dmitri Konson, Vice President Global Engineering of Tenneco´s Clean Air business group, about active exhaust valve technology and how its use has evolved to become a key part of hybrid exhaust architecture, rather than being a device that has been previously used on many vehicles, particularly those of high performance, to meet noise regulation.

4D imaging radar – Is this the Next Big Thing to define automotive safety standards?

8 Jan 2021 | Matthew Beecham

Vayyar, an Israeli based startup, says its production-ready radar-on-chip platform has the safety credentials to redefine automotive standards, offering automakers and tier one suppliers in-cabin and ADAS high-end safety features for all vehicles, including economy models. To learn more, Matthew Beecham spoke to Ian Podkamien, Head of Automotive at Vayyar.

Sensing solutions for automotive applications – Q&A with Infineon

7 Jan 2021 | Matthew Beecham

Three megatrends are shaping the auto industry: electro-mobility, automated driving and the connected car. This is welcome news for Infineon given that all are heavily reliant on sensors. Continuing just-auto/AIC’s series of interviews, Matthew Beecham spoke to Lars Ullrich, Vice President of the Automotive at Infineon Technologies Americas about developing semiconductor solutions for automotive applications.

UX is the new horsepower - Q&A with Continental

7 Jan 2021 | Matthew Beecham

Maximising the time we spend in a car has become a major focus for manufacturers as the auto industry prepares for automated driving. Tomorrow’s cockpit will be digital and immersive to create a more personalised, versatile and connected user experience (UX) allowing all occupants to make the most of their time on board. To learn more about smart cockpits and how the market place for LiDAR is evolving, we caught up with Ulrich Lueders, Director Strategy & Portfolio, Business Unit Human Machine Interface at Continental and Arnaud Lagandré, Head of Business Unit Advanced Driver Assistance Systems North America at Continental.

LiDAR paves the way for AVs - Q&A with Innoviz

5 Jan 2021 | Matthew Beecham

Innoviz Technologies develops and manufactures solid-state LiDAR (which stands for Light Detection and Ranging) sensors and perception software that enable the mass-production of autonomous vehicles (AVs). The Israeli startup is going public in a $1.4bn reverse merger with Collective Growth Corp. Continuing just-auto/AIC’s series of interviews, Matthew Beecham caught up with Omer Keilaf, Co-Founder and CEO of Innoviz to learn more about its sensor technologies, investment plans and how the marketplace for LiDAR is evolving.

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