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Bosch Salutes Heritage and Innovation of Automotive Industry

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Reflecting on Automotive Milestones, Bosch Honors Industry at 14th Annual Woodward Dream Cruise

FARMINGTON HILLS, Mich., Aug. 15, 2008 -- As nearly 1.5 million people, and more than 40,000 custom vehicles gather in the Motor City for the world's largest one-day automotive event, the Woodward Dream Cruise, Bosch salutes the significant achievements and innovations of the North American automotive industry.

"The 14th annual Woodward Dream Cruise gives Metropolitan Detroit a chance to witness a variety of cars spanning different eras and innovations," said Chandra Lewis, director, corporate communications, Robert Bosch LLC. "Many of these innovations have helped to revolutionize the automotive industry making driving safer and more efficient. Since 1906, Bosch has partnered with vehicle manufacturers to provide new technology for the automotive industry and we look forward to continuing to be an innovation partner."

Since its introduction into the U.S. automotive industry in 1906, Bosch has been a driving force behind many automotive innovations, including antilock braking systems (ABS), electronic stability control (ESC) systems, diesel and gasoline fuel injection, performance spark plugs, and the magneto (ignition systems).


ABS, a safety system that prevents the wheels from locking while braking, was originally utilized by the aircraft industry before Robert Bosch GmbH introduced it into many European car models. Bosch launched ABS in the U.S. market in 1985 when General Motors equipped the 1986 Chevrolet Corvette with its ABS. Worldwide series production began in 1978, making this year the 30th anniversary of the technology.

In 1996, Bosch acquired AlliedSignal's brake business, enabling it to sell complete brake systems, including both ABS and ESC. Bosch's ESC, which was an evolution of the ABS concept, debuted in the United States in 1999 and was soon recognized as one of the company's technology breakthroughs. In 2006, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) concluded that up to 10,000 deaths a year could be avoided if all passenger vehicles were equipped with ESC.

Also in 2006, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) confirmed ESC's safety attributes when it mandated that all vehicles sold in the United States had to have ESC as standard equipment by the 2012 model year.

Today, Bosch continues in its efforts to make driving safer through its combined active and passive safety (CAPS) program. With CAPS, multiple sensors are networked to allow information about the vehicle, drivers, and the environment to be shared and utilized, protecting both drivers and passengers.

Diesel Common Rail System

Bosch debuted its common rail system in the United States is 1999, and soon after, expanded its Charleston, S.C., plant to manufacture common rail systems for GM trucks. The common rail system was designed to help manufacturers optimize fuel consumption and comply with emissions regulations by separating pressure generation and injection. Today, common rail systems have led to significant achievements in diesel engine technology.

Gasoline Direct Injection

More than 40 years ago, Bosch developed the world's first electronically controlled gasoline injection system on a series-production passenger car. Called D-Jetronic, the system was first unveiled to the public on the VW 1600 LE/TLE during the 1967 International Motor Show (IAA) in Frankfurt, Germany. This innovative gasoline injection system signaled the breakthrough for gasoline injection by allowing engine developers to precisely attune the fuel-air mixture to the engine's operating status, thereby reducing both fuel consumption and emissions. By as early as 1972 - just five years after its debut - 18 automobile manufacturers were already using this innovative Bosch technology in series production.

  Other Bosch Technology Milestones

  1913 - First complete automotive electrical system comprising a magneto
         ignition with spark plugs, starter, generator, lighting system and

  1927 - First Bosch U.S. mass-produced diesel pump

  1936 - First U.S. mass-produced diesel injection systems for passenger

  1951 - Development of gasoline injection pumps for vehicle engines

  1978 - Global launch of ABS, the first series-produced antilock braking
         system;  debuts in United States in 1985

  1985 - Bosch platinum spark plug introduced in U.S. market

  1995 - Introduction of Electronic Stability Program; debuts in United
         States in 1999

  1997 - Introduction of diesel common rail direct injection system; debuts
         in United States in 1999

  2002 - Series production of adaptive cruise control; debuts in United
         States in 2002

  2004 - Series production of third-generation common rail system; with
         piezo in-line injectors

  2007 - Series production of stop-start system begins with BMW

  2008 - Second generation gasoline direct injection system, DI-Motronic,
         debuts on Lincoln MKS and Cadillac CTS.

Demonstrating its leadership and commitment to innovation, Bosch spends more than $4 billion a year globally for research and development, and applies for more than 3,000 patents worldwide.