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Drive by Wire Market Size, Share & COVID-19 Impact Analysis, By Application Type (Throttle by Wire, Steer by Wire, Shift by Wire, Brake by Wire and Park by Wire), By Component Type (Electronic Control Unit, Actuator, Electronic Throttle Control Module, Electronic Transmission Control Unit), By Vehicle Type (Passenger Cars and Commercial Vehicles) and Regional Forecasts, 2020-2027

Region : Global | Format: PDF | Report ID: FBI103673



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The global drive by wire market size was USD 4.99 billion in 2019 and is projected to reach USD 4.27 billion by 2027, growing at a CAGR of 5.0% during the forecast period. The Europe drive by wire market size was valued at USD 2.06 billion in 2019. Drive by wire is emerging technology increasingly adopted in the automotive industry, particularly in premium and luxury vehicles, as well as in commercial vehicles. Drive-by-wire technology is an electronic system that replaces traditional mechanical control systems in vehicles with electrical or electronic components.

Drive-by-wire (DbW) is a semi-automatic computer control technology mainly used in automobiles. It controls the vehicle’s steering, braking, acceleration, and other important functions. In conventional vehicles, these functions are carried by hydraulic or mechanical components. These mechanical components are prone to wear. Hence, their efficiency declines over the period. In order to overcome these challenges, major key players have come up with this technology, which is also known as X-by wire.

Drive-by-wire has replaced the mechanical systems such as intermediate shafts, master cylinders, pumps, steering columns, and more with the high-end electronic control systems. For example, instead of a physical link from the accelerator to the engine, the sensor detects the driver’s movement and sends a signal to the actuator which actuates the throttle and turns the wheel. This replacement of mechanical components has resulted in the development of lightweight and fuel-efficient vehicles.

COVID-19: Declining Sales & Production of Vehicles May Obstruct Growth

The coronavirus outbreak started in Wuhan, China in December 2019, and then quickly spread to the other parts of the world. In the month of March 2020, the World Health Organization (WHO) declared this a pandemic because it affected large numbers of people in various countries. This pandemic has forced several governments to adopt stringent policies, including nationwide lockdown, social distancing, and sanitation facilities, which have severely affected economic activities. Stringent regulations have led to the temporary closure of the manufacturing and service industries. The pandemic is expected to affect personal behaviors related to travel, work style, and buying preferences of a consumer. Trade between the countries is also restricted, which would hinder the supply chain management industry. Similarly, economic conditions and civilization as a whole are also greatly affected.

Along with several other industries, the automobile industry has also been affected. In the coronavirus pandemic, the automobile market is facing major challenges. There has been a sharp decline in the sales and production of vehicles as many automotive companies have been closed down amid the stringent regulations on cross-border trade and complete lockdown.

  • For example, the Government of India announced nationwide lockdown from 24th March 2020 till 31st May. According to the statistics released by the Society of Indian Automobile Manufacturers (SIAM), the sale of passenger cars fell by 51% in March y-o-y to 85229 units. SUVs segment fell by 45% y-o-y to 51569 units. The sales of commercial vehicles declined up to 88% in March that includes light and heavy commercial vehicles.

Several automobile companies have been forced to change their investment plans to recover from the losses and pay more attention to the basic requirements. The consumers are focusing more on satisfying basic needs rather than spending on luxury products. Thus, the autonomous vehicle market is expected to decline in the interim period.


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Increasing Adoption of Vehicle Electrification is a Positive Trend for Growth

The introduction of hybrid electric vehicles triggered a technological revolution in the automotive industry. Factors such as tax benefits and environmental awareness have fuelled the demand for hybrid electric vehicles. Key original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) have developed an electrification process to enhance the efficiency of the vehicle. For example, when the vehicle is idling or parked, the engine automatically turns off and the battery’s power is used to power the vehicle via the start-stop system. Conventional systems that were used to power up the engine required more fuel, whereas, the use of an electric motor in the start-stop system can reduce engine load, thereby improving fuel efficiency. Hence, vehicle electrification is one of the major drive by wire market trends.


Rising Adoption of Autonomous Vehicles to Drive Growth

Autonomous vehicles have various advantages over the conventional vehicles. These driverless vehicles offer enhanced passenger safety and a reduction in vehicular emissions. Autonomous vehicles are equipped with various sensors such as GPS, LiDAR, cameras, RADAR, and drive-by-wire systems. These sensors help to detect any obstacle nearing the vehicle, therefore, reducing the chances of road accidents. Sensors are also attached with the electric fuel pump which control the flow of fuel to the tank and helps to maintain the fuel efficiency of the vehicle.

Stringent Emission Norms by Governments & Ruling Bodies to Boost Growth

Governments and ruling bodies across the globe have imposed stringent emission norms on automotive manufacturers. These regulations have forced manufacturers to increase the use of lightweight materials, such as composite materials, plastics, lightweight metals, and usage of electronic components that replace the conventional mechanical linkages.  A 15% reduction in the weight of the vehicle enhances the fuel economy by 8% to 10%. The use of lightweight electronic components reduces the fuel consumption in the vehicle because they are lighter and consume less energy during acceleration.


High Cost of Electronic Components & Systems May Restrain Growth

Some challenges hindering the growth of the market are the high costs and risk of failure of these electronic components, especially in extreme rainfall. The high replacement and maintenance of the electronic components are also one of the reasons that are set to restrain the drive by wire market growth over the forecast period. The process of installation, manufacturing, and designing of this technology is highly expensive and hence adds up to the cost of the vehicle.


By Application Type Analysis

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Shift-by-Wire Segment to Dominate Stoked by its Ability to Provide Effortless Shifting of Gears

Based on the type, the market is segmented into throttle-by-wire, steer-by-wire, shift-by-wire, brake-by-wire, and park-by-wire. The shift-by-wire segment is anticipated to dominate the market over the forecast period. It is a system that changes the gearbox mode with the help of an electronic control device. This system helps to eliminate the mechanical linkage between the gearbox and the lever. Shift-by-wire offers an effortless shifting of gears with the help of a push button. Proper gear shifting helps to maintain the fuel efficiency of the vehicle.

The brake-by-wire segment is expected to hold the second-largest position in the market. This technology completely replaces the clutch, mechanical, and hydraulic components with actuators and sensors to control the brake of the vehicle. Brake-by-wire reduces the stopping time of the vehicle and works more precisely, as compared to the hydraulic and pneumatic brakes. It occupies less space, reduces the entire weight of the system, and helps to improve the efficiency of the vehicle.

By Component Type Analysis

Electronic Control Unit Segment is Expected to Hold the Largest Share

Based on the component type, the market is segmented into electronic control unit, actuators, electronic throttle control module, and electronic transmission control unit. The electronic control unit (ECU) segment is expected to dominate the market over the forecast period. The growing inclination of consumers towards electronic systems over the mechanical systems is set to fuel the demand for ECU over the forecast period. The increasing demand for ECU in hybrid and electric vehicles has helped to maintain its dominance in the market. Hybrid vehicles consist of multiple electronic control units, which help to curb fuel consumption and provide a smooth and comfortable ride to the passenger.

The throttle control module segment is expected to hold the second-largest position in the market. Electronic throttle controls (ETC) have replaced the conventional throttle cable by an accelerator position sensor (APS). In this system, ETC reads the input from the accelerator position sensor and further transmits an instruction to the electronic throttle body (ETB).

  • For example, if the accelerator is depressed by 25%, the throttle control opens the ETB by 25% and when the accelerator is released, the throttle control closes the throttle body. This function helps to maintain an idle air control as the engine idle speed needs to be adjusted according to fluctuating engine loads and temperatures.

Electronic throttle control is also used in traction control, cruise control, pre-collision system, and electronic stability control. ETC enhances fuel efficiency and performance of the vehicle. This, in turn, is expected to maintain its second-largest position in the market.

By Vehicle Type Analysis

Passenger Car Segment to Hold the Maximum Share Backed by Their Rising Sales & Production

Based on the vehicle type, the market is segmented into passenger cars and commercial vehicles. The passenger car segment holds the maximum share of the global market. The increasing sales and production of passenger cars is anticipated to result in the dominance of this segment in the market. Various tax benefits offered by the government on the purchase of hybrid & electric vehicles would fuel the demand for passenger cars over the forecast period. Stringent safety norms imposed by the government have forced the manufacturers to equip traction control, airbags, and seat belt warning alerts as a standard feature in all vehicle segments. This enhanced safety feature is, in turn, creating high traction for passenger cars.

The commercial vehicle segment is also expected to maintain a good growth over the forecast period. In recent years, commercial vehicles are equipped with technologically advanced electronic components such as throttle-by-wire, shift-by-wire, and others. These components help to reduce the weight of the vehicle which, in turn, increases the fuel efficiency of the vehicle. Commercial vehicles equipped with lightweight electronic components are expected to help maintain its good growth in the market.


Europe Drive-by-Wire Market Size, 2019 (USD Billion)

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Based on the region, the market is segmented into North America, Europe, Asia Pacific, and the rest of the world. Europe dominates the market. The early adoption of advanced technology in this region owing to the presence of major key players and stringent emission norms imposed by the government are anticipated to maintain the dominance of Europe over the forecast period.

Asia Pacific is estimated to be the fastest-growing market during the forecast period owing to the growing inclination of consumers towards enhanced safety and fuel-efficient vehicles. The stringent emission norms imposed by developing countries in this region are resulting in the increased sales and production of electric vehicles which, in turn, is anticipated to help the drive-by-wire technology gain traction.

North America is expected to show good growth in this market over the forecast period. In order to meet the emission standards, key OEMs in this region are investing in research & development (R&D) to equip cost-effective Dbw systems in commercial vehicles.


Robert Bosch GmbH is a Key Player in the Market

Robert Bosch GmbH is a major player in the drive-by-wire market. The development of a wide range of technologies such as electric fuel pumps, electronic power steering, sensors, and others are proving beneficial for electric and self-driving vehicles. Also, the constant partnerships with emerging key players in order to manufacture cost-effective products is strengthening the market position of Bosch globally. Bosch introduced a new program called “ New Dimension- Sustainability 2025” to continue a successful business in the long term. This program focuses on six sustainable strategies namely climate, energy, water, urbanization, globalization and health. The company believes that social and ecological balance is critical to maintain the global dominance.


  • Curtiss Wright Corp.  (North Carolina, United States)

  • TRW Automotive (Michigan, United States)

  • Nissan Motor Corporation (Yokohama, Japan)

  • Robert Bosch GmbH (Gerlingen, Germany)

  • Continental AG (Hanover, Germany)

  • P.S.A Citroen (Rueil-Malmaison, France)

  • SKF Group (Gothenburg, Sweden)

  • Denso Corporation (Aichi, japan)

  • ZF Friedrichshafen AG (Friedrichshafen, Germany)

  • Peugeot (Paris, France)


  • February 2020 – Summit Racing to Offer Drive-by-Wire Throttle Bodies to Granatelli Motorsports Summit Racing announced to offer its drive by wire throttle bodies to Granatelli Motorsports. This throttle body will enhance the performance of the engine by increasing the air-flow across the engine’s revolutions per minute (RPM) rate.

  • September 2020 – Drive-By-Wire Throttle System Mandatory for Gen3 Supercars. According to control component tender document, it has become mandatory to equip drive-by-wire throttle system in all gen3 supercars by 2022. According to the tender document, the technical requirements of pedal box is to equip electronic throttle control system instead of conventional cables.

  • August 2018 – Schaeffler to Buy Drive-by-Wire Technology for its Self-Driving/Autonomous Vehicles  Schaeffler AG buys drive by wire technology from Paravan GmbH. This technology will help the company to replace its mechanical linkages and develop more advanced and fuel-efficient cars. This technology is expected to play a crucial role in Schaeffler’s autonomous vehicles.

  • August 2018 – Bosch Launches Electric Vehicle Powertrain Bosch launched its e-powertrain for commercial vehicles. This electric powertrain is expected to travel 80kms in a single charge. As most of the deliveries are less than 80kms, this electric powertrain is expected to be sufficient to complete a full day operation.


An Infographic Representation of Drive by Wire Market

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The drive by wire market research report provides a detailed analysis of the market and focuses on key aspects such as the leading companies, product types, and leading applications of the product. Besides this, the report offers insights into the market trends and highlights the key industry developments. In addition to the factors above, the report encompasses several factors that have contributed to the growth of the market over recent years.

Report Scope & Segmentation



Study Period


Base Year


Forecast Period


Historical Period



  Value (USD billion) & Volume (thousand units)


By Application Type

  • Throttle-by-wire

  • Steer-by-wire

  • Shift-by-wire

  • Brake-by-wire

  • Park-by-wire

By Component Type

  • Electronic control unit

  • Actuator

  • Electronic throttle control module

  • Electronic transmission control unit

By Vehicle Type

  • Passenger Cars

  • Commercial Vehicles

By Geography

  • North America (U.S., Canada, and Mexico)

  • Europe (U.K., Germany, France and Rest of Europe)

  • Asia-Pacific (Japan, China, India, South Korea and Rest of Asia- Pacific)

  • Rest of the World

Frequently Asked Questions

Fortune Business Insights says that the global market size for drive by wire was USD 4.99 billion in 2019 and is projected to reach USD 4.27 billion by 2027.

In 2019, the value of the market in Europe was USD 2.06 billion.

The market is projected to grow at a CAGR of 5.0% in the forecast period (2020 to 2027).

The application type segment is expected to be the leading segment in this market during the forecast period.

The stringent emission norms is the key factor driving the global market.

Robert Bosch GmbH is the major player in the global market.

Europe dominated the market in terms of share in 2019.

The rising usage of electric vehicles is expected to propel the adoption of drive-by-wire systems.

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