Steering wheel controls provide enhanced convenience - Embedded.com

Steering wheel controls provide enhanced convenience


The modular steering wheel multi-function unit made by RAFI GmbH & Co. KG is an innovative solution providing enhanced convenience and reliability of operation when driving. With up to 14 freely assignable functions you can handle nearly all vehicle functions without having to take the hands off the steering wheel or the eye off the road. The steering wheel multi-function unit excels by an ergonomic, logical and intuitively understandable arrangement of the controls.

Using the multi-function unit provides an “i-Pod feeling” at the steering wheel. The central element is a rotary wheel or rotary roll about which a closed ring with a rocking function (about the x and z axes) or 4 segmented single buttons are arranged. In the basic version, convenience systems such as automatic air conditioner, handsfree set or radio can be addressed directly via the steering wheel multi-function unit. RAFI offers an integrated or separate modular E-box for the integration of the multi-function unit into the data bus system of the vehicle (e.g. LIN, CAN, FlexRay), depending on the space available or the scope of functions implemented.

The RAFI steering wheel multi-function unit has an overall height of only about 12 mm including the necessary mechanical and electronic elements for the basic functions and thus offers maximum flexibility in steering wheel design. The system has a consistent modular structure and can therefore be used across several model series and equipment variants: Interfacing with various automotive data bus systems via the E-box, optional day/night design, variable number of detents of rotary wheel and roll, selectable key click, customer-specific materials for the controls as well as suitability for horn operation and steering wheel heating.

Hence, the new RAFI steering wheel multi-function unit fulfils all ergonomic, electronic and quality requirements of the automotive industry.

About RAFI’s Automotive Industry Division:

The Automotive Industry division of RAFI GmbH & Co. KG from Ravensburg, Germany, a specialist for industrial data input systems and components, has been established specifically to serve customers from the automotive industry and supplies special electromechanical components – e.g. short-travel keyswitches – and complete input systems such as multi-function switches for installation in car steering wheels as well as membrane keypads for lorries and buses. RAFI has already been a supplier for the automotive industry since the end of the eighties and is able to offer high-quality input systems manufactured at the production sites in Ravensburg and Mezötur (Hungary). RAFI is one of only a few existing suppliers offering also competencies in the field of electronics in addition to mechanical engineering and production services (plastic injection moulding, sheet metal machining, silk-screen printing and assembly). The production of high-quality electronic modules relies on RAFI’s own electronic engineering department and state-of-the-art SMD and THT assembly lines. Numerous renowned automotive companies appreciate the ergonomic operating concepts, modern design and absolute reliability of the high-quality operating units. For a summary of RAFI’s complete scope of services in this area – including application examples from the fields of passenger cars, lorries, buses, tractors and marine technology – refer to the brochure “Components and Systems for the Automotive Industry”:
http://www.rafi.de/active/wFiles/Automotive.pdf

About RAFI:

RAFI has developed and manufactured switches and signal lamps since 1900. In 1966, the company entered into the field of electronics, presenting its first solid-state components. With innovative ideas and high-quality products, RAFI has acquired a good reputation among users of electromechanical components, control panels and electronic modules in these years. Today, RAFI has subsidiaries in the United Kingdom, France, Italy and Hungary. RAFI has its headquarters in Berg near Ravensburg, Germany, 20 km north of the Lake Constance.

RAFI GmbH & Co. KG, Ravensburger Str. 128 – 134, D-88276 Berg
Phone: +49-(0)751-89-0, Fax: +49-(0)751-89-1300
http://www.RAFI.de/, Email: mailto:


Note: The above text is the public part of the press release obtained from the manufacturer (with minor modifications). EETimes Europe cannot be held responsible for the claims and statements made by the manufacturer. The text is intended as a supplement to the new product presentations in EETimes Europe magazine.


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