Kiekert AG, a global developer of vehicle locking systems with its U.S. headquarters in Wixom, plans to introduce an innovative brake system that will prevent car doors from bumping into parked cars, garage walls, or other obstacles.
Called i-protect, the idea for the sensor-based system came from a high-school student technology competition sponsored by Boston Consulting Group. Students in Germany thought of the idea, and Kiekert will now develop and industrialize the innovation.
“Our partnership programs with universities throughout the world helps us maintain our position as the technology leader in automotive locking systems," says Karl Krause, CEO of Kiekert. He says the system will is designed to reduce sheet metal damage and costly insurance claims by automatically stopping car doors from striking other objects as they are being opened.
Krause says the student group that developed the technology will retain patent rights to the technology.
Kiekert AG, founded in 1857, has six development centers, six production sites, and two sales locations with more than 5,000 employees in nine countries. In 2013, the automotive supplier spent $2 million to upgrade and expand its 50,000 square foot plant in Wixom. The plant produces door-latch modules for Ford.