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Toshiba Intros Next Generation Automotive HDDs

November 30, 2007

Toshiba Intros Next Generation Automotive HDDs

Toshiba Europe Storage Device Division reinforced its leadership in automotive grade hard disk drives as it unleashed two new models for the automotive sector.

Toshiba Europe Storage Device Division reinforced its leadership in automotive grade hard disk drives (HDD) as it unleashed two new models for the automotive sector. The single platter 80GB MK8050GAC and 40GB MK4050GAC drives will offer in-car entertainment and information systems the vital storage capacity boost required for 3D GPS navigation, mp3 playback, digital video and gaming.

High performance HDDs have become a pivotal component for next generation automotive electronic systems. According to research firm IDC, the market for automotive HDDs will reach 8.5 million units sold by 2009. Automotive-grade HDDs offer substantial advantages for OEM system designers compared with solid state memory. Although solid state memory delivers a durable storage solution in resilient small form factors, it becomes a highly expensive solution when capacity demand hits double digit figures.

In-car systems are required to operate efficiently and effectively in extreme environments in order to avoid system downtime and data loss. Toshiba’s new HDDs can operate at altitudes of -300m to 5,500m, where air is often thin thanks to improvements in the aerodynamic technology utilised on the magnetic head slider. In addition, to ensure the disc spindle operates in sub-freezing and high temperatures, the operating temperature range of Toshiba’s automotive drives range between -22° to 185° F (-30° to +85° C) whilst the spindle motor runs at 4,200rpm.

Toshiba has more than 10 years experience working within the automotive sector and to date has shipped over seven million units worldwide2 claiming 85 per cent market share3. In Germany, where a high percentage of Europe’s leading automotive manufacturers are based and where the provision of quality components is fundamental, Toshiba automotive grade hard disk drives have been qualified for implementation in almost all of the major car manufacturers’ high-end models. Many of these models will be available for purchase throughout 2008.


“Car navigation systems built around fast, high capacity HDD are getting more popular in the Japanese and European market, a trend that is soon expected to come to North America, the world’s largest automotive market,” explained Toshio Magome, Senior Director, Techno Research Co. Ltd. “Toshiba entered the market in 2001, and soon established leadership by drawing on advanced HDD technologies cultivated over the years. We can expect to see more innovation in navigation system, and can expect new drives developed by Toshiba to play an important role in technology advances.”


Toshiba will also launch two separate 80GB and 40GB HDD models for the after sales market. The MK8050GACE and MK4050GACE will be specifically incorporated into stand alone devices such as GPS systems and for implementation in industrial and commercial applications such as automated machinery, retail point of sale machines and CCTV security cameras.

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