Land Rover Defender: The Vehicle With The Brain of a Super Computer
Date posted: 10 January 2020
Brains and brawn: Rugged new Land Rover Defender is to showcase the world-first dual ESIM connectivity at CES 2020 in Las Vegas, the world's largest consumer electronics show.
New Defender is the first vehicle with two embedded LTE modems for enhanced connectivity, while Jaguar Land Rover’s new Pivi Pro touchscreen infotainment has an industry-leading design and shares electronic hardware with the latest smartphones.
The fast-responding and intuitive Pivi Pro system allows customers to make full use of New Defender’s Software-Over-The-Air (SOTA) technology, without compromising its ability to stream music and connect to apps on the move. With its own designated LTE modem and eSIM, the SOTA technology can operate in the background, without affecting the day-to-day connectivity provided by the separate modem and eSIM in the infotainment module.
The always-on and always-connected Pivi Pro set-up sits at the heart of New Defender’s cabin and its 10-inch high-resolution touchscreen allows customers to control all aspects of the vehicle using the same processing hardware as the latest smartphones. In addition, customers can connect two mobile devices to the infotainment head unit at once using Bluetooth, so the driver and passenger can enjoy hands-free functionality concurrently without the need to swap connections.
"With one LTE modem and eSIM dedicated to the Software-Over-The-Air (SOTA) technology and the same set-up looking after music streaming and apps, New Defender has the digital capacity to keep customers connected, updated and entertained at all times anywhere in the world. You could liken the design to a brain, with each half enjoying its own connection for unrivalled and uninterrupted service. Like the brain, one side of the system looks after logical functions, like SOTA, while the other takes care of more creative tasks."
Director of Connected Car and Future Technology, Jaguar Land Rover
Pivi Pro has its own battery, so the system is always on and able to respond immediately on start-up. As a result, the navigation is ready to accept new destinations the moment the driver sits in the vehicle, with no delay. Customers can also download updates, so the system is always using the latest software – including navigation mapping data – without the need to visit retailers for updates to be installed.
The LTE connectivity behind Jaguar Land Rover’s infotainment also allows New Defender to roam across multiple networks in different regions to optimise connectivity, so customers suffer minimal interruptions caused by coverage blackspots from individual providers. In addition, the cloud-based architecture provided by CloudCar makes it easy to access and use content and services on the move and will even support in-car parking payments when New Defender hits UK streets this spring.
Land Rover has also confirmed the first New Defenders will feature more SOTA capability than originally projected. At its Frankfurt Motor Show launch in September, Land Rover announced that 14 individual electronic control modules would be able to receive remote updates, but the first production vehicles will feature 16 control units capable of receiving SOTA updates. Land Rover engineers estimate that in-dealer software updates will be a thing of the past for Defender customers before the end of 2021 as additional SOTA modules come online, rising from the current 16 to more than 45.
Powering the Defender’s Pivi Pro infotainment and Vehicle Domain Controller are two high-performance Qualcomm® Snapdragon 820Am Automotive Platforms, each with an integrated Snapdragon® X12 LTE modem. The Snapdragon 820Am Automotive Platform delivers unprecedented performance and technology integration designed to support highly advanced telematics, infotainment and digital clusters. It delivers rich, immersive and seamless connected in-vehicle experiences, while making next-generation vehicles more connected, smart and contextually aware.
With its power-efficient CPU cores, stunning and state-of-the-art GPU performance, integrated machine learning and powerful video processing capabilities, the Snapdragon 820Am Automotive Platform is designed to provide unmatched connected in-car experiences, including responsive interfaces, immersive 4K graphics, high-definition media streaming, and immersive audio.
Two X12 LTE modems provide parallel high-bandwidth downlink and uplink connectivity across multiple networks, ultra-fast connectivity and lower latency for secure, reliable communications. Additionally, the X12 LTE modem features an integrated global navigation satellite system (GNSS) and automotive dead reckoning, increasing the vehicle’s capability to accurately keep track of its location and position.
The Defender is the first Land Rover to include a domain controller that consolidates a number of Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS) and driver convenience functions built on top of the QNX Hypervisor, providing the kind of in-car experience drivers want, with the security, safety and reliability they need. Consolidating more systems onto fewer ECUs is integral to the future of automotive electrical design and will be the model for Land Rover’s next-generation vehicle architecture.
Within New Defender, the Blackberry QNX operating system helps deliver a smartphone-like experience for Pivi Pro infotainment users. The technology also powers the operating system for the latest generation TFT Interactive Driver Display, which can be configured by the driver to show vehicle instrumentation, navigation instructions and mapping information or a combination of the two.
Certified to the highest level of ISO 26262 – ASIL D, the QNX operating system provides the ultimate peace of mind to Defender drivers. The first ASIL D-certified QNX Hypervisor for Safety ensures the multiple Operating Systems (OS) powering the safety-critical factors (e.g. body domain control) are isolated from non-safety critical systems (e.g. infotainment). This is critical to ensuring that compromised systems, or those requiring updates, won’t impact driving functions.
As a leader in safety-certified, secure and reliable embedded software, BlackBerry QNX technology is embedded in more than 150 million vehicles on the road today and used by top automakers for their advanced driver assistance, digital instrument clusters, connectivity modules, hands-free, and infotainment systems.
Jaguar Land Rover is the first global car maker to use CloudCar’s latest cloud-based services platform. Working with the world-leading developer of connected driver experiences brings new levels of customer convenience to the Pivi Pro infotainment fitted to New Defender.
By scanning with smartphone QR codes displayed on Pivi Pro, user accounts are compatible with music streaming services including Spotify, TuneIn and Deezer that are automatically recognised and added to the cloud – transferring the driver’s digital life to their vehicle in a heartbeat. From this point, customers can access and stream content without even having their smartphone in the vehicle. Content provider updates are carried out in the cloud, so they are always up to date – even if the corresponding smartphone app has not been updated.
The CloudCar system supports a variety of service and content functionalities and recognises dial-in numbers and codes, as well as locations, stored within calendar meeting invites. Drivers and passengers can then navigate to or dial-in to meetings and conference calls with a single touch of the central touchscreen, minimising distractions.
In the UK, Defender owners will even be able to pay for parking using the central touchscreen through apps including RingGo, without leaving their vehicle. Customers can also take their digital landscape with them when swapping between Jaguar and Land Rover vehicles, providing instant familiarity in multi-car households within whichever vehicle is being driven.
New Defender is the first vehicle to make use of the latest-generation technology, marking the next step in Jaguar Land Rover’s ongoing partnership with CloudCar, which dates back to 2017.
Land Rover is on the road to a connected and autonomous future and New Defender features a raft of safety-boosting technologies developed with Bosch to enhance the driving experience.
Alongside the latest Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS), which include Adaptive Cruise Control and Blind Spot Assist, Bosch has supported the development of Land Rover’s innovative 3D Surround Camera System, which gives drivers a unique view of the vehicle’s immediate perimeter using four
wide-angle HD cameras, each providing a 190-degree field-of-view.
Connected using a 3Gbit/s video backbone and fused with 14 ultrasonic sensors, the clever technology gives drivers a choice of vantage points including a top-down plan view and seamless perspective view. It even performs as a virtual scout, allowing drivers to pan around the vehicle on screen for the ultimate Command Driving Position on and off-road.
Land Rover and Bosch have a relationship that stretches back decades and has pioneered numerous propulsion and motion control features that will go on to become the industry standard, including ClearSight Ground View, Land Rover’s Wade Sensing technology and Advanced Tow Assist features – all are enabled by the Bosch driver assistance platform.