Renesas Electronics Introduces Two Versions of Third-Generation R-Car Starter Kits
October 2016 by Emmanuelle Lamandé
Renesas Electronics announced two new third-generation R-Car starter kits that make the development environment more accessible to automotive software development engineers. The new R-Car starter kits are targeted at the “professional community” of highly specialized engineers engaged in software development in areas such as image recognition and human machine interface (HMI) who make active use of open-source software.
One of the two new starter kits employs the new R-Car M3 system-on-chip (SoC), the newest member of the third-generation of R-Car lineup, designed for use in simple yet high-performance automotive computing systems. The R-Car M3 maintains software compatibility with the existing high-end R-Car H3 and provides a platform to match increased requirements for HMI and ADAS features in higher-volume vehicle segments.
The R-Car starter kits will be available in two versions: the R-Car Starter Kit Pro, which comes with a board incorporating the R-Car M3, and the R-Car Starter Kit Premier, which comes with a board employing the high-end R-Car H3 SoC.
Renesas has developed the new R-Car starter kits to simplify the task of building automotive Linux platforms as well as QNX® development environments etc. optimized for automotive systems, which are being standardized by open-source (OS) communities  including Automotive Grade Linux (AGL), GENIVI® . The starter kits are scalable and can be used in software development for a wide range of applications, such as ADAS, infotainment, reconfigurable digital clusters, and integrated digital cockpits. Leveraging the R-Car SoCs’ powerful computing performance for vehicle installations and advanced open-source software, the new starter kits enable software engineers in the “professional community” to bypass lower-level development tasks and focus on the development of highly specialized and sophisticated software to speed time to market for new automotive computing systems.
Samples of the R-Car M3 SoC are available now. The R-Car Starter Kit Pro (M3) and Starter Kit Premier (H3) are scheduled to be available at the end of October 2016.
 Open-source communities are not-for-profit organizations that develop, improve, and disseminate information about open-source software, which is software for which the source code is made available publically at no charge.
 Automotive Grade Linux (AGL) and GENIVI are organizations that develop and promote open-source Linux-based in-vehicle infotainment system software.