by Anton Shilov
01/12/2012 | 10:30 PM
Nvidia Corp. this week announced that Audi AG, Tesla and Lamborghini have selected the Nvidia Tegra 3 platform to power in-vehicle infotainment systems as well as new digital instrument clusters that replace traditional dashboard gauges. Audi will use Tegra 3 chips across all its vehicles staring from 2013, Tesla will utilize two SoCs inside model S sedan and Lamborghini will utilize Tegra inside its flagship Aventador model.
"Audi and Nvidia are radically narrowing the gap that has existed between consumer electronics and automotive electronics. By leveraging technology from the very latest smart phones and tablets, Audi is leading the market with innovations that enhance safety and make driving more enjoyable," said Dan Vivoli, senior vice president at Nvidia.
Both of the next-gen Audi's infotainment and the instrument-cluster systems will utilize "Visual Computing Modules" (VCMs) powered by Tegra 3. VCMs are computer subsystems equipped with Tegra processors, memory and IO controllers, designed specifically for automotive applications.
By utilizing VCMs, Audi can quickly and easily incorporate the newest Tegra visual computing technologies into its vehicles, enabling it to offer the most cutting-edge visual computing capabilities in the marketplace, which is expected to enable safer, more intuitive driving by providing critical information that can be easily understood with a quick glance.
"Audi has long been at the forefront of automotive design, integrating state-of-the-art technology into our vehicles. Our deep relationship with Nvidia demonstrates how we have consistently stayed ahead of the competition," said Ricky Hudi, chief executive engineer of electrics/electronics at Audi.
The Tesla Model S boasts advanced infotainment and instrument cluster systems, based on two Tegra processors. One powers the digital instrument cluster, while the other processor handles the 17-inch touchscreen infotainment system. The infotainment system includes a full web browser and car controls, such as for the panoramic sunroof and door locks.
Lamborghini Aventador, powered by 6.5L V12 engine that lifts if off it from 0 to 60mph (100km/h) in 2.9 seconds, uses Nvidia Tegra processors in its multimedia and navigation system, which displays real-time Google Maps data.
Nvidia Tegra 3 "Kal-El" system-on-chip (SoC) is based on four high-performance Cortex-A9 general-purpose cores with Neon accelerators (1.4GHz single-core or 1.30GHz quad-core mode) and one power-optimized Cortex-A9 core (up to 500MHz), features a GeForce graphics processing unit with twelve stream processors and will have a new display and video engines capable of supporting Blu-ray disc video playback and stereo-3D graphics output. The new device integrates single-channel DDR3L-1500/LPDDR2-1066 memory controller, e.MMC 4.41, SD 3.0, SATA II, 7.1-channel audio controller, faster image signal processor and so on. According to Nvidia's own performance benchmarks, Tegra 3 is 50% - 200%+ faster than Tegra 2 in various applications.