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Drive-by-Wire: the Good, the Bad, and the Ugly

Rahmi Doğucan E.
October 07, 2022

You've probably heard of "drive-by-wire" technology if you're a gearhead. Drive-by-wire is actually a general term for referring to the technique of electronically managing a car's brakes, steering and throttle without the help of conventional mechanical links. Nowadays, electronic controls are used in everything from the braking system to the steering system. There are various benefits associated with this technology, which is increasingly included in new cars. 

Drive-by-wire technology is a word used to describe a vehicle's features. These are the vehicles that accomplish the throttle body’s functions with electronic controls rather than conventional mechanical ones. In other words, drivers cannot adjust their car's throttle sensitivity using hydraulic pressure or wires. 

What are the Good Sides of Drive By Wire Technology?

A drive-by-wire system differs from a drive-by-cable system in that there is little to no mechanical connection between the throttle pedal and your engine in the former. To put it another way, a drive-by-wire system uses an electrical signal to instruct the engine on how much power to produce.

The latter (drive-by-cable) still transmits data from the accelerator pedal to the engine through a mechanical cable. Older cars often have this kind of mechanism, however newer cars don't often have it.

Fuel Efficiency

There is a lower need for gasoline when there are fewer moving parts. This will lead to significantly higher fuel efficiency in your car because the electronics are ultimately powered by the car battery.

Freedom of Control

There are only a certain number of interior locations in a mechanical car where controls can be installed. This has altered due to drive-by-wire technology, which enables auto manufacturers to put controls almost everywhere they choose. Drivers now have a far more excellent choice in managing their cars while on the road.

Less Carbon Emission

This is also related to the previously mentioned first benefit. Your car will emit fewer carbon emissions because of the increased fuel efficiency. Environmentally conscious people among you will undoubtedly value this as well.

Weight Reduction

Vehicles that are mechanically connected contain a lot of moving parts, which increases their weight. Drive-by-wire technology drastically reduces the number of moving parts while also lightening the weight of the car.

Any Bad Sides to Drive By Wire Technology?

People's sole concern with drive-by-wire vehicles appears to be the possibility of electronic failure or hacking. For there to be a severe issue on the road, only one computer or sensor in the car needs to malfunction.

Drive-by-wire vehicles have so many safety features that you can immediately detect a problem with an electrical component. After that, you can directly address the issue by taking it to the mechanic.

A mechanical vehicle might also be said to fit the same description. All it would take for one of those cars to fail would be a cord or something to happen to the hydraulic pressure.

What is the Ugly Truth of Drive By Wire Technology?

The ugliest truth about drive-by-wire is that due to the factory set throttle response, people may get higher or lower sensitivity pedals. Imagine driving in a parking lot with your loved ones in the backseat. An electronic throttle response with no modifications made would make them jump on their seats if it were too high or you would simply be late to wherever you want to go if it were too low. 

This is exactly why we made Pedal Commander! Be free in choosing your pedal’s response rates and enjoy freedom. There many good aspects to Pedal Commander like having better fuel economy on ECO mode up to 20%, which also very useful for off-road vehicles to prevent slippy terrain! You can also increase the acceleration speed to help you get better track times, safer overtaking outcomes and many more!

Drive-by-Wire: the Good, the Bad, and the Ugly