Welcome Address

18th CTI Symposium – How Automotive Companies Are Safeguarding Their Futures

The transformation to the age of electromobility and automation demands enormous investments. The goal is clear, but the timeline is still uncertain – and above all, region-specific. While China sets higher quotas each year for electric vehicles, in the US electromobility still takes a back seat. In Europe, stricter CO2 limits – 81 g/km from 2025 and 59 g/km from 2030 – will further boost electrified drives and accelerate the transition to sustainable mobility. As a result, in a few years’ time nobody will be making drives without an e-motor – starting with the companies producing heavyweight premium vehicles.

Commercial vehicle manufacturers are also required to electrify their drives, not just for the “last mile”. In this sector, recurring urban usage scenarios offer totally new opportunities for electromobility – for example by adapting batteries and charging infrastructures to range requirements. For heavy commercial vehicles and buses, entirely different concepts, such as overhead power lines, are also being discussed and tested.

So drive and transmission developers must prepare for multiple scenarios, with factors such as automation and vehicle connectivity creating high levels of diversity and complexity. Currently, variants range from conventional drives through 12+12V or 12+48V mild hybridization up to high-voltage 800V electric drives. With electromobility and automation transforming the markets, no manufacturer wants to be left behind. In a race that may not be wholly justified at a time when consumers are hesitant about EVs, we are seeing rivalry among manufacturers in electric drive concepts. But for customers, the outlook is steadily improving: By 2025, European manufacturers plan to launch about 250 new PHEV and BEV models. Two range categories are envisaged for BEVs (approx. 300 and approx. 600 km), while PHEV ranges will vary from 50 km to 100 km and more.

The primary goal for automotive suppliers and manufacturers is to safeguard their future by offering more attractive products.

For this, they need to understand customer expectations and their impact on new drive concepts, then build products that meet those wishes. Many companies, and particularly small and medium enterprises, could apply their skills here to add value for their customers – either by extending the functionality of existing products, or by using existing facilities to build completely new ones. Conversely, automotive manufacturers need to hear what existing or potential new opportunities the products suppliers can offer them. Never before has communication at all levels been so important between automotive companies and suppliers as well as sub-suppliers.

As a glance at the agenda shows, this year’s symposium will address these issues in numerous contributions and statements:

  • Development of markets and regulations and their influence on drives.
  • New hybrid and electric drives for passenger cars, commercial vehicles and buses, networked and automated.
  • 48V mild hybridization for various drives and markets.
  • New AT, DCT, CVT and MT concepts with enhanced comfort and efficiency, plus their modular hybridization.
  • Diverse DHTs for new hybrid drives.
  • Single and multi-speed transmissions for EV drives, high-rpm concepts.
  • Conventional and electrified four-wheel drives, torque vectoring.
  • Semiconductors, electric motors and batteries as key technologies in electrified drives.
  • New generation of oils and lubricants for electrified drivetrains.
  • Virtual, customer-focused development using AI to determine efficiency, driveability and durability.
  • Electro-mechanical actuators, sensors
  • Compact, efficient launch and shift elements, jaw clutches, parking locks
  • Production: quality assurance, lightweight battery housings, fuel cell stacks, ring gear manufacturing, laser welding in EM production, surface treatment of friction linings.

Once again, this year’s CTI Young Drive Expert Award will recognise recent graduates and postgraduates for their outstanding work in the field of transmissions and drive development. Applications for the 11th CTI Young Drive Expert Award are open until 1 November – perhaps you have suitable candidates among your employees and working students.

To address the broad range of topics outlined above, our extensive programme includes around 100 specialist lectures in plenary and in 16 parallel lecture series. In the panel discussion, the question to be discussed by vehicle, mobility and drive experts is “Do we have the technology to meet customer expectations while meeting legal requirements?” All this will be accompanied by CTI SYMPOSIUM EXPO, our “hands-on technology market for innovative products” with 120 exhibitors.

To round off the main programme there will also be an introductory day for industry newcomers, plus our annual CTI TEST DRIVE with demo vehicles that offer a practical experience of new and evolving drive and transmission concepts.

The 18th CTI Symposium in Berlin is an excellent forum for international drive and transmission specialists who wish to exchange opinions and experiences, get valuable updates on the industry status quo, and gain a clearer view of the challenges and solutions that lie ahead.

I look forward to your participation and wish you plenty of useful dialogue and inspiration.

Yours sincerely,

Prof. Dr Ferit KüçükayProf. Dr Ferit Küçükay
Director of the Institute of Automotive Engineering
Technical University of Braunschweig