DERKA opens connected car testing site in Malaga

International expert organisation DEKRA officially opened its connected car test area in Malaga, Spain as part of its international network for connected, automated and electric driving.

At the opening, DEKRA’s experts organised two live connected car demos utilising BMW vehicles and showed some of the scenarios DEKRA has developed to test V2X technologies (vehicle-to-everything e.g. cars, infrastructure, pedestrians). These technologies allow vehicles and other road users to receive the position and movement data of all the other road users and infrastructure in their vicinity.

BMW made three conventional and two electric vehicles available for a demo about Emergency Electronic Brake Lights (EEBL) and Road Work Warning (RWW) scenarios. Other technologies that DEKRA will test include left turn assist, blind spot warning, forward collision warning, green light optimal speed advisory, red light violation warning, and control loss warning. All the test scenarios are already available for customers.

The opening of the connected car test area was attended by government officials and DEKRA top management. Ivo Rauh, member of the DEKRA SE management board and head of DEKRA’s Industrial activities said, ‘The Malaga test area, part of our global testing network, will allow us to smartly combine safety and connectivity testing, enabling automotive manufacturers and suppliers to gain a competitive edge. Manufacturers can start future-proofing right now.’

DEKRA’s connected car test area will become a key component of its international testing network for connected, automated, and electric driving. Bert Zoetbrood, CEO of DEKRA’s global product testing & certification division commented, ‘The hub in Malaga will focus amongst others on R&D validation and early production testing, while the existing DEKRA testing oval and the recently acquired Lausitzring race track in Klettwitz, Germany, will be able to host much larger volume of tests and multiple projects simultaneously.’

With a size of over 500 hectares, the race track in Klettwitz is the largest independent automotive test area for connected and automated driving in Europe and in the world for automotive systems, whole vehicle and infrastructure testing.

In the UK, the SMMT have said that connected and autonomous vehicles (CAVs) will provide huge social, industrial and economic benefits to the UK. These innovative vehicles will expand our industrial base, improve safety and congestion, drive up productivity and free up space usually devoted to vehicles in our urban areas. According to the KPMG study commissioned by SMMT, connected and autonomous vehicles are set to add £51bn a year to the UK economy by 2030. This is in addition to creating 320,000 new jobs, 25,000 specifically in automotive manufacturing.