Vehicle Demonstrates Innovation in Seating, Electronics, Interiors and Batteries

By Johnson Controls Automotive Experience, PRNE
Monday, September 12, 2011

FRANKFURT, Germany, September 13, 2011 -

Johnson Controls’ ie:3 concept car makes its European debut

Cross reference: Picture is available via epa european pressphoto agency and can be downloaded free of charge at:

Johnson Controls today showcased its ie:3 concept car for the first time in Europe at the Internationale Automobil-Ausstellung (IAA) in Frankfurt. The ie:3, which refers to “inspired efficiency,” combines the latest technology in the areas of seating, electronics, interiors and batteries.

Johnson Controls’ ie:3 demonstrates a solution to the challenge of packaging an energy storage system in a fully electric B-segment vehicle without compromising comfort. The demonstrator vehicle also features reduced complexity and mass of individual components and innovative materials that create a sense of spaciousness in a small vehicle. The combination of customized interior styling and electronic connectivity solutions also address an increasingly younger, urban society.

“The innovations featured in the car are adaptable to markets around the world, are ready for production and available for 2015 model year vehicles and beyond,” said Beda Bolzenius, president, Johnson Controls Automotive Experience. Innovations and technologies featured in the Johnson Controls ie:3 demonstrator include:

Optimizing Human Machine Interface (HMI)

  • Integrated multi-touch display, easily accessible for driver and passenger. The nine-inch graphic information display increases interaction between occupants and the vehicle.
  • Combiner head-up display, designed as a standalone unit, projects key driver information onto an extendable pane in the driver’s field of vision
  • Virtual instrument cluster, featuring transreflective display technology with high-quality graphics on a 6,5 inch module, displaying data of various driver assistance systems
  • Sliding multi-controller, setting the functions of the infotainment system
  • Wireless charging, enabling two mobile devices to be charged wirelessly and safely without adapters or cables

Next generation lithium-ion automotive battery

  • New hard-case prismatic energy cell.
  • Innovative cooling loop isolated from the battery compartment.
  • Low-profile battery design enabling interior design flexibility.
  • Modular, scalable architecture.

Flexible space concept  

  • Lithium-ion battery with prismatic cell format integrated into the floor assembly of the vehicle.
  • Stadium seat concept with innovative cantilevered design creates increased versatility for passenger seat and rear seats.

Mass reduction  

  • Decorative 3-D mesh fabric covers the instrument panel, reducing weight in the interior.
  • Lightweight sound system, featuring a headliner with integrated audio that enables increased storage opportunities in vehicle doors.
  • Lightweight overhead system and trim.

Unique material application

  • PP Thin Film, suitable for interior parts with high scratch-performance requirements.
  • Compressed natural fibers combined with PP Thin Film, provide
    a durable surface with strength and reduced mass.
  • Long glass fiber-reinforced thermoplastic for strength
    with reduced mass.
  • FaserTec natural fibers, offering eco-friendly benefits and a slim profile with superior comfort.
  • Trim covers from material expert Michel Thierry, which was acquired by Johnson Controls in December 2010.

Human machine interface designed with consumers’ needs in mind

The ie:3 reflects a human machine interface that enables vehicle occupants to customize applications to their personal needs. Occupants can interact with all operating controls - from the multi-touch display to the sliding multi-controller to the virtual instrument cluster - without having to adjust their sitting position. The electronics in the vehicle are tailored to the consumer’s needs and meets the demands of today’s smart phone generation for style, operability, convenience and connectivity.

Vehicles features next generation electric vehicle battery technology

Johnson Controls is expanding its battery cell portfolio to include a new prismatic design. In keeping with the task of designing a compact, yet powerful energy store for this concept car, the company developed an innovative battery system into the floor of the vehicle. The lithium-ion battery in the ie:3 has an electric storage capacity of 23.7 kWh (kilowatt hours) and 216 cells that take up very little room height-wise thanks to their prismatic construction, making it ideal for installation in spaces with height restrictions.

The innovative design of the battery concept enables a range of about 100 miles or 160 kilometers per charge. Full battery power is resumed after six to eight hours of charging. The power pack also offers a high level of system safety and is well protected in the event of an accident.

“Johnson Controls launches only technically mature quality products onto the market that have been tested for extreme application. We are aiming to produce in series the prismatic cells before 2013,” said Stefan Suckow, managing director at Johnson Controls-Saft.

ie:3 highlights light-weight solutions and flexible use of space

Johnson Controls has significantly reduced the number of components in the ie:3, resulting in decreased vehicle mass. The ie:3 design also features reduced complexity and mass with a flexible seating system, and unique audio system.

The ie:3 seating was designed to be as light as possible without compromising safety, comfort or the feeling of luxury. The seating system takes up approximately 25 percent less space than conventional models. The flexible seating concept is similar to stadium seats that fold up, creating more legroom and storage space. To reduce materials used in the vehicle, Johnson Controls sought an alternative approach to the audio system. Rather than taking the conventional approach to audio systems by placing speakers in door panels, Johnson Controls installed transmitters concealed in a lightweight headliner, optimizing sound and offering additional design freedom in the door panels.

“The ie:3 concept is an excellent example of Johnson Controls’ design and development capabilities, and demonstrates how we can enable vehicle personalization for consumers around the world,” said Andreas Maashoff, director of industrial design and craftsmanship, consumer and market research, Johnson Controls Automotive Experience.

At information and pictures are available regarding the following ie:3 topics

  • Human-Machine-Interaction
  • Combiner Head-Up-Display
  • Flexible Seating System
  • Material Application
  • Lightweight Audio Integration
  • Battery System

and the company´s further IAA-news.

Johnson Controls GmbH                        
Automotive Experience                                
Ulrich Andree
Tel.: +49-2174-65-4343

Johnson Controls Power Solutions EMEA                                        
Ina Longwitz
Tel.: +49-511-975-1031


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