Preprint available of “A Survey on the Benefits and Drawbacks of AUTOSAR” at #WASA15

In a previous post, we were looking for respondents for a web-based survey about the benefits and drawbacks of AUTOSAR. We have already analyzed the results, which are published at the Workshop on Automotive Software Architecture  2015 (WASA’15). Please, find below the abstract and the reference.


The use of software reference architectures plays a fundamental role in software development, as it could bring several benefits such as providing means to design applications’ software architectures with higher productivity and quality. However, many organizations still find scarce the existing empirical evidence about the benefits and drawbacks of software reference architectures. Organizations need such evidence to make informed decisions whether or not to adopt a software reference architecture for the development and maintenance of software applications. In this context, this paper aims to gather evidence on AUTOSAR, a mature and accepted software reference architecture for automotive applications used worldwide by more than 180 organizations. We designed and executed a web-based survey addressed to practitioners with experience in using AUTOSAR. We obtained 51 valid responses. The survey results indicate that the most popular benefits of AUTOSAR are standardization (88%), reuse (80%) and interoperability (51%) whereas its most important drawbacks are complexity (65%), initial investment (59%) and learning curve (51%). The respondents of the survey also gave directions to handle the major drawbacks of AUTOSAR, such as the need of a tool environment to improve its usability and handle its complexity, and the need of more stable releases of AUTOSAR to decrease the cost of migrating among versions.

Keywords: AUTOSAR, automotive applications, automotive software development, software architecture, reference architecture, survey, empirical software engineering.


  • [PDF] [DOI] S. Martínez-Fernández, C. P. Ayala, X. Franch, and E. Y. Nakagawa, “A Survey on the Benefits and Drawbacks of AUTOSAR,” in Proceedings of the First International Workshop on Automotive Software Architecture, New York, NY, USA, 2015, p. 19–26.
    author = {Mart\'{\i}nez-Fern\'{a}ndez, Silverio and Ayala, Claudia P. and Franch, Xavier and Nakagawa, Elisa Y.},
    title = {{A Survey on the Benefits and Drawbacks of AUTOSAR}},
    booktitle = {{Proceedings of the First International Workshop on Automotive Software Architecture}},
    series = {WASA '15},
    year = {2015},
    isbn = {978-1-4503-3444-0},
    location = {Montr\&\#233;al, QC, Canada},
    pages = {19--26},
    numpages = {8},
    url = {},
    doi = {10.1145/2752489.2752493},
    acmid = {2752493},
    publisher = {ACM},
    address = {New York, NY, USA},
    keywords = {automotive applications, automotive software development, autosar, empirical software engineering., reference architecture, software architecture, survey}

p.s. We are still inviting AUTOSAR stakeholders (OEMs, ECUs suppliers, tool providers and developers) to participate in this study.

The participation in this study involves filling in a 2-questions online survey that will take less than 10 minutes of your time. The questionnaire is available in English at:

The online survey can be performed anonymously or providing personal data. If you want to receive a summary of early results as participant, provide an e-mail. All information provided will be treated confidentially. Your input is very much appreciated, and will provide important guidance for the study!!