Experience of introducing reference architectures in the development of automotive electronic systems
Paper i proceeding, 2005

The requirements on increasing functionality, quality, and, customisation, while reducing cost has lead to the introduction of an architecture centred development process for electronic systems at Volvo Cars. This process enables better control of system integration and achieving non-functional requirements, such as reusability, understandability, etc. The result of the process is a reference architecture that includes strategies for implementing the balanced requirements, architectural views that provide means for reasoning about all the concerns of all stakeholders, and a top-level design of the architecturally significant parts. The reference architecture guides the design of several projects, and thus, cost is optimised accordingly. The main contribution of this paper is that we present experiences from introducing the architecture centred process. The main conclusions are that disseminating and maintaining the reference architecture actually require more resources than developing it. Furthermore, experience shows it is difficult to create an architecture that enables a lot of different variants that is also strategically useable in the long term.


Örjan Askerdal

Johan Granholm

Anders Alminger

Jakob Axelsson

International Conference on Software Engineering: Proceedings of the second international workshop on Software engineering for automotive systems