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NXP unveils new S32K microcontroller platform for Automotive-grade software

Date: 22/03/2017
NXP Semiconductors N.V. has launched the S32K1 family which combines automotive grade tools and software in support of a scalable family of ARM Cortex-based MCUs with future-proof features. This combination reduces development effort and time to market in automotive applications.

Relying on AUTOSAR for automotive-grade drivers is the traditional approach for software development, however, not all applications require it. The alternative route is self-development, which is labor-intensive, adds qualification requirements and diverts critical resources. As ECU complexity increases, maintaining quality software and meeting time-to-market requirements can be achieved through use of validated sub-system components.

NXP is providing an alternative, turn-key option for self-development for applications where the use of AUTOSAR is not mandated. The free-of-charge, pre-qualified, automotive-grade software development kit (SDK) enables rapid prototyping with simple drag and drop functionality. It includes:

MISRA and SPICE Level 3 compliant low-level drivers (LLDs) for all peripherals
Optional application-specific middleware for LIN, NFC and touch sensing
FreeRTOS operating system
Drivers for complementary NXP ICs for faster application bring-up and production readiness e.g. system basis chip (SBC) drivers
Documented source code and out-of-the-box examples eliminating the need for device documentation during application bring-up.

The SDK is pre-installed in NXPs free S32 Design Studio (DS), an Eclipse-based integrated development environment (IDE).

For AUTOSAR applications, NXP standard MCAL and OS support has been expanded with new Complex Device Drivers (CDD) and a new S32K starter kit from ARCCORE. It is available free of charge for evaluation.

Future-proof hardware

The initial S32K1 family will span 128KB-2MB of flash memory based on ARM Cortex-M cores. All family members include ISO CAN FD, CSEc hardware security, ASIL-B support and ultra-low-power performance. This scalable approach, combined with a common package strategy and production grade software, maximizes reuse allowing customers to react quickly to changing market requirements.

S32K marks an inflection point in NXPs automotive MCU strategy, said Manuel Alves, General Manager GPIS products in NXPs Automotive Microcontroller and Processors Business Line. We are transitioning from multiple proprietary architectures to a continuous ARM Cortex MCU portfolio combining future-proof hardware with software differentiation.

The S32Ks software and tool support from NXP and multiple ARM ecosystem partners, enables fast time-to-market for developers of all experience levels, said Paul Lee, Global Distribution Marketing Manager for NXPs Automotive Microcontroller and Processors Business Line. Furthermore, the significant investment in automotive-grade software sets a new standard for an MCU supplier.


S32K144 samples and a $49 development board are now available with production scheduled for the second quarter of 2017.

S32K MCUs are included in NXPs product longevity program which assures supply for a minimum of 15 years.