Brose North America, Inc.

Brose Hands-free Liftgate Opener

Shoppers arriving at their car with arms full have surely wished their rear lift gate could open automatically. The challenge was to design a hands-free system that would open reliably but only when desired. A BMW-Daimler-VW consortium concluded that a non-contact kicking motion might work; Brose made it work.

Using standard proximity sensors, Brose created an electronic profile of a kicking motion that allows people of all sizes to signal opening yet cannot be triggered accidentally by a dog fetching a ball or a child swinging their legs while sitting in the rear. The Brose hands-free solution can be installed on any vehicle that has a keyless entry system and an electronic latch release. First launched on the BMW 5-series in 2011, it is now available on the Ford Escape and C-Max and the Mercedes SL and will soon launch with other OEMs.