Innovations from Germany continue to literally move the world to this day.
Wilhelm Maybach and Gottlieb Daimler constructed the first motorized 'Reitwagen' (riding wagon) as far back as 1865. The today named motorcycle amazes people until now. In 1879, it was followed by a tram developed by Werner von Siemens. The motor coach, or automobile, was first produced in 1886. It is a real milestone in human history, and one which we owe to Carl Benz and Gottlieb Daimler. Lastly, in 1890, Rudolf Diesel revolutionized drive technology with his eponymous diesel engine. Now a subsidiary of Valeo, SWF has been producing and developing innovative wipers, wiper motors and linkages since 1922.
Many more important innovations came out of Germany in the decades that followed – air bags, for example. They entered series production for the first time in 1981, as an optional accessory for an additional fee, in a Mercedes-Benz S class. Valeo's latest generation of wipers – AquaBlade® – which was first used in an S class in 2013, is today providing significantly greater safety in road traffic thanks to significantly improved visibility in wet and icy weather.
Most innovations require not just courage, will and hard work, but also a little luck and sometimes some start-up capital. Valeo promotes all these qualities and, in line with the country's long tradition, invests considerably in research and development in Germany, for example in radar and parking sensors and driver assistance systems in the area of Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS) and even “Valet Park4U”, which has just recently been introduced. This allows your vehicle to maneuver in and out of parking spaces independently and without a driver – in fact, without the driver even being inside the vehicle. Other Valeo automotive milestones also come from Germany: ultrasound parking assistance sensors (in series production since 1991), radar and laser scanners, LED technologies such as rain, light and tunnel sensors (rain sensors since 1996), blind spot detection and blind spot monitoring systems (since 2002), Lane Guide® - lane departure warning system (since 2004) and BeamAtic®. to automatically adjust high beams when another vehicle approaches.
Valeo has played a key role in supporting automotive development with innovative products for over 90 years. As one of the world's largest suppliers and innovation drivers in the automotive and commercial vehicles industry, to reduce pressure on the environment by lowering CO2 emissions and to further develop intuitive driving, Valeo already employs 4,500 staff in Germany (over 77,000 worldwide), who conduct intensive research and development into the technical challenges of tomorrow and beyond – in order to meet our customers' highest standards in technology, comfort and environmental protection.