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A New Era for Automotive Safety: EU General Safety Regulation II and Its Impact on Auto OEMs

Starting July 7, 2024, a new mandatory safety framework will reshape the automotive industry in the European Union. The second phase of the EU General Safety Regulation II (GSR II) will mandate that all new vehicles comply with enhanced safety standards. The aim of GSR II is to enhance road safety and reduce accidents, injuries and fatalities on European roads by ensuring that all new vehicles are equipped with state-of-the-art systems that are both safe and secure.  This regulatory shift is set to impact Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs) profoundly, requiring them to implement  advanced safety technologies and robust cybersecurity measures.

Key Technological Mandates

GSR II's comprehensive safety framework introduces several mandatory technologies that OEMs must integrate into new vehicles:

Advanced Emergency Braking System (AEBS): AEBS automatically detects potential collisions and activates braking, aiming to mitigate accidents or reduce their severity. This system will require OEMs to incorporate sophisticated sensor arrays and real-time data processing capabilities. This follows regulation in the United States.

Emergency Lane Keeping System (ELKS): This technology provides steering inputs to keep vehicles within their lanes, preventing unintentional lane departures. OEMs will need to ensure precise integration of sensors and actuators to maintain vehicle control effectively. 

Emergency Stop Signal (ESS): ESS activates hazard lights during emergency braking, alerting nearby drivers and potentially preventing follow-on collisions. Implementation of this system will require reliable communication between braking systems and hazard lighting.

Intelligent Speed Assistance (ISA): ISA helps drivers maintain safe speeds by providing real-time feedback. OEMs must develop or integrate accurate speed limit recognition systems and user-friendly feedback mechanisms.

Driver Drowsiness and Attention Warning (DDAW): Monitoring signs of driver fatigue or distraction, DDAW enhances driver alertness and safety. This system necessitates advanced driver monitoring technologies, possibly involving cameras and biometric sensors.

Reversing Detection (REV): Using cameras and sensors to alert drivers to obstacles behind the vehicle, REV is crucial for safe maneuvering. OEMs will need to incorporate high-resolution imaging systems and reliable sensor fusion algorithms.

Event Data Recorder (EDR): Recording data before, during, and after a collision, EDRs are vital for accident analysis. Ensuring robust data capture and storage systems will be a key challenge for OEMs.

For buses and heavy commercial vehicles, additional systems are mandated:

Blind Spot Information System (BSIS): BSIS alerts drivers to road users in their blind spots, requiring OEMs to integrate comprehensive sensor coverage and intelligent alert systems.

Moving Off Information System (MOIS): Preventing collisions with pedestrians or cyclists during drive-off, MOIS will necessitate advanced detection technologies and responsive control systems.

Tire Pressure Monitoring System (TPMS): TPMS alerts drivers to tire pressure loss, ensuring timely maintenance and enhancing safety. OEMs must integrate reliable pressure sensors and real-time monitoring systems.

Cybersecurity (CS): GSR II mandates a certified Cybersecurity Management System to protect vehicle security throughout the vehicle lifecycle – from design to production to maintenance and decommissioning. This requirement mandates robust cybersecurity measures, compelling OEMs to invest in advanced security protocols, data protection, continuous threat monitoring and reporting, along with incident response planning.

Safety and Security Implications

The implementation of these technologies could have profound safety and security implications. The mandated technologies are designed to prevent accidents, protect occupants, and safeguard vulnerable road users. The collective impact of AEBS, ELKS, ISA, and other systems could lead to a significant reduction in road accidents, injuries, and fatalities.

The requirement for a certified Cybersecurity Management System also reflects the increasing importance of protecting vehicles from cyber threats. As vehicles become more connected, the risk of cyberattacks grows, making robust cybersecurity measures essential to prevent malicious exploits.

Challenges for OEMs

While the new regulations promise enhanced safety, they also pose significant challenges for OEMs.

OEMs must integrate a wide array of new technologies seamlessly, ensuring they work together reliably without compromising vehicle performance or safety. The development and integration of these advanced systems will likely increase production costs. OEMs will need to balance the costs with the benefits of enhanced safety features.

Ensuring compliance with GSR II will require OEMs to navigate complex regulatory requirements, necessitating substantial investments in research, development, and testing. Implementing and maintaining robust cybersecurity protocols will require continuous vigilance and adaptation to emerging threats, while adding another layer of complexity to vehicle manufacturing. 

Where QNX Can Help

The EU General Safety Regulation II marks a pivotal moment for the automotive industry. As OEMs must meet these new requirements, the focus on advanced safety technologies and robust cybersecurity measures must be at the center of development.

While the path to compliance presents challenges, choosing the right partner for your automotive foundational software can alleviate a lot of this pressure. For more than four decades, QNX has been at the forefront of providing safe and secure embedded software solutions. Our secure products are designed with cybersecurity at their core. By leveraging microkernel architecture, QNX® operating systems have a limited attack surface, making them inherently more secure. In addition, QNX received certification to the ISO/SAE 21434 automotive cybersecurity standard. The certification by TÜV Rheinland is an endorsement of the company’s ability to support automotive OEMs working to meet UNECE WP.29 Regulation 155. 

QNX solutions, including QNX® OS for Safety and QNX® Hypervisor for Safety, are pre-certified up to ISO 26262 ASIL D. Everything from digital cockpits to advanced driver assistance systems (ADAS) to automated drive controllers runs on a single system-on-a-chip (SoC). QNX also provides automotive security services to help at each phase in the software development lifecycle.

Given that safety and security are so tightly linked, it’s important to note that ISO 21434 and ISO 26262, the functional safety standards for the development of electrical and electronic systems in road vehicles, have complementary goals. The two standards emphasize the importance of integrating their respective criteria into the overall engineering process, and both cover a product's lifecycle from concept to maintenance to decommissioning. 

GSR2, has been effective in Europe since July 6th 2022, with GSR1 in place since November 2019. GSR2 has been implemented in two phases, the first of which was in 2022. The EU estimates that the new regulations will prevent at least 25,000 road fatalities by 2038.

To learn more about how QNX can help as you enter the EU General Safety Regulation II (GSR II) era, talk to us.

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David McCourt

About David McCourt

David McCourt is Content Marketing Manager at BlackBerry QNX.