Continental Acquires ASL Vision, a Specialized Company for 360-Degree Surround Detection

Continental Acquires ASL Vision, a Specialized Company for 360-Degree Surround
                                  Detection

-- The feature also known as "surround view" will expand the product portfolio
of camera-based advanced driver assistance features

-- 360-degree surround detection provides an important step toward
accident-free and automated driving

PR Newswire

FRANKFURT AM MAIN, Germany, Jan. 14, 2013

FRANKFURT AM MAIN, Germany, Jan. 14, 2013 /PRNewswire/ --Today, the
international automotive supplier Continental announced the acquisition of ASL
Vision, based in Lewes, England. The companies agreed not to disclose the
price for the acquisition. "Continental is one of the world's leading
suppliers of advanced driver assistance systems, which warn, support and
assist drivers in many driving situations by detecting the vehicle's
surrounding via camera, infrared and/or radar. With this step, we are
enhancing our technology portfolio by adding a strategically important
building block, 360-degree surround detection, while at the same time further
developing our competence in the camera sector in a targeted way," said
Friedrich Angerbauer, Head of the Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS)
Business Unit in the Continental Chassis & Safety Division.

"Surround view" systems optimally detect the entire vehicle surrounding and
are an excellent addition to the ContiGuard safety concept. ContiGuard ^
integrates active and passive safety systems, which will become even more
effective and comprehensive through surrounding sensors and their coordinated
interactions. In particular, the fusion of radar and camera will allow new and
expanded features, and it is an important prerequisite for implementing
automated driving. "By acquiring ASL Vision, we are accelerating the existing
growth activities in the area of advanced driver assistance systems. 'Surround
view' will also allow us to safely master complex traffic situations such as
lane changes, passing other cars and challenging parking circumstances," said
Dr. Ralf Cramer, Member of the Board of Continental AG and President of the
Continental Chassis & Safety Division.

"Surround view" camera systems for 360-degree detection
As a general rule, a "surround view" system consists of three to five cameras
as well as an electronic processing unit. ASL Vision offers a range of
technological solutions. One is a camera system like those already available
in the passenger vehicle sector, with a display feature for the camera images
on the dashboard, that is overlaid with intelligent displays such as the
vehicle trajectory display when driving backward. ASL Vision also has a
successful system that was developed especially for the aftermarket and is
already in use in the industrial sector and in mining, for instance. In the
future, Continental will work on and further develop "intelligent" "surround
view" systems with features such as free-space and object recognition, as well
as reading curb edges for highly precise parking.

At its headquarters in Lewes, England, as well at its German site in Kronach,
Bavaria, ASL Vision has a total of 53 employees, primarily engineers, who
specialize in the areas of software, algorithms, image processing and
hardware. All of these employees will join Continental, and the company is
planning to add further engineers both in England and Germany for these
technology areas. The Lewes site will combine the competences in the areas of
systems, software and algorithms for "surround view." At the same time, the
research and development center in Ulm will become an additional site for
360-degree camera systems. In the future, the site will work on issues such as
hardware, cameras and application projects.

"To facilitate rapid growth in the automotive market, to harness creativity
and to bring innovations successfully into volume series production, close
cooperation with leading automotive suppliers is essential. Continental
provides the ideal environment for this," said Ian Saward, the current and
future joint Managing Director of ASL Vision. In addition to Saward, Wolfgang
Fey, head of the newly created "Surround View" segment within the ADAS
Business Unit at Continental, will also become joint Managing Director at ASL
Vision. "With the highly qualified ASL Vision employees and their many years
of automotive experience as well as their high quality standards, we are
gaining experts in their field. The products have already been in series
production with vehicle manufacturers for several years, so we are taking over
an ambitious but also experienced and highly motivated company," said Fey.

With sales of €30.5 billion in 2011, Continental is among the leading
automotive suppliers worldwide. As a supplier of brake systems, systems and
components for powertrains and chassis, instrumentation, infotainment
solutions, vehicle electronics, tires and technical elastomers, Continental
contributes to enhanced driving safety and global climate protection.
Continental is also an expert partner in networked automobile communication.
Continental currently has approximately 170,000 employees in 46 countries.

The Automotive Group with its three divisions Chassis & Safety (sales of
approximately €6.5 billion in 2011, 33,000 employees), Powertrain (sales of
approximately €5.8 billion in 2011, 31,000 employees) and Interior (sales of
approximately €6.1 billion in 2011, 32,000 employees) achieved sales of
approximately €18.5 billion in 2011. The Automotive Group is present in more
than 170 locations worldwide. As a partner of the automotive and commercial
vehicle industry, it develops and produces innovative products and systems for
a modern automotive future, in which cars provide individual mobility and
driving pleasure consistent with driving safety, environmental responsibility
and cost-efficiency.

The Chassis & Safety Division develops and produces electronic and hydraulic
brake and chassis control systems, sensors, driver assistance systems, airbag
electronics and -sensorics, washer systems and electronic air suspension
systems. Its core competence is the integration of active and passive driving
safety into ContiGuard. The Powertrain Division integrates innovative and
efficient system solutions for vehicle powertrains. The comprehensive range of
products includes gasoline and diesel injection systems, engine management,
transmission control, including sensors and actuators, as well as fuel-supply
systems and components and systems for hybrid and electric drives. Information
management is at the very heart of the Interior Division, which provides a
range of products that includes instrument clusters and multifunctional
displays, control units, electronic car-entry systems, tire-monitoring
systems, radios, multimedia and navigation systems, climate control systems,
telematics solutions and cockpit modules and systems.

www.continental-automotive.com www.continental-corporation.com

SOURCE Continental

Website: http://www.continental-corporation.com
Contact: Nicole Geissler, Vice President Communications, Continental, Division
Chassis & Safety, Tel.: +49 69 7603-6000, Fax: +49 69 7603-3945,
nicole.geissler@continental-corporation.com; Soeren Pinkow, External
Communiactions, Continental, Division Chassis & Safety, Tel.: +49 69
7603-8492, Fax: +49 69 7603-3945, soeren.pinkow@continental-corporation.com
 
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