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One-way systems in car & motorcyle alarms take center stage

Companies are broadening their range of economical designs to reach more markets.

China suppliers of car and motorcycle alarms are expanding their selections of one-way systems. Priced 30 to 50 percent lower than two-way versions, the line is seen as having strong growth prospects in the US and Europe, where recovery from the 2008 financial crisis has been slow.

One-way car alarm
Steelmate’s model S6086 one-way car alarm has a transmitter with wear-resistant buttons.

Southeast Asia is also considered an attractive market for the products, particularly the emerging conomies in the bloc. Fueling optimistic projections is the China-ASEAN Free Trade Area agreement, which took effect in the six original members last year. Four other countries, namely Laos, Burma, Cambodia and Vietnam, are scheduled to implement the provisions in 2015.

Car and motorcycle alarms bound for the region have an average price of $10 per set. Versions for the US and Europe, meanwhile, are exported at roughly $13 each.

The difference is due primarily to the type of components incorporated in designs. ICs integrated in the former are typically from South Korea or Taiwan, and systems meant for the US and Europe adopt versions made in those areas.

Zhongshan Changfan Auto Security Co. Ltd is among the enterprises that have shifted focus to one-way systems since the economic slowdown. The maker forecasts exports to the ASEAN will grow 60 to 70 percent in 2011, with Indonesia and the Philippines the key destinations.

Despite the increasing emphasis on one-way selections, suppliers are not neglecting the two-way line. At many companies, R&D efforts center on the integration of various technologies to boost models’ security and user-friendly attributes.

Zhongshan BCS Electronics Mfy, for example, has developed a series featuring an RFID-based passive keyless entry function with an effective induction distance of 5m. It is currently working on improving the stability of the system to ensure consistent performance.

At Daemon Car & Motorcycle Alarm System Co. Ltd, the target is to extend transmission distance from between 300 and 500m to 1,000m. The maker also aims to enhance the anti-interference capability of its designs for greater security.

Micca Auto Import & Export Co. Ltd is offering designs capable of sending an alarm even if the power supply to the control unit has been cut off. Such products are meant primarily for Australia.

Steelmate Co. Ltd, meanwhile, incorporates the remote engine start function in most of its alarms. Sets with this feature are compatible with manual and automatic cars running on diesel or gasoline.

Products & prices

Products & prices

China-made alarms operate at 303, 315, 360 or 433MHz, and their sirens have sound pressure levels ranging from 100 to 130dB. Low-end types use fixed or code hopping technology, while midlevel and upscale variants adopt the latter or rolling code. Some employ fingerprint recognition as well.

One-way systems constitute more than 70 percent of output and exports. Most have two transmitters with three to six buttons supporting basic functions such as arming, disarming, mute arming, car locating and trunk release.

In two-way sets, at least one transmitter has an LCD or LED screen showing the vehicle’s status. An alert is triggered at four types of intrusion, including that of the door or trunk opening. Value-added features include time, battery voltage and temperature display.

Prices of car alarms begin at $6, while units designed for motorcycles are available starting at $5. Quotes increase based on the system’s transmission distance, international certification and functions.

In the first category, models not exceeding $14 are generally one-way versions with five to eight customizable functions and an effective range of less than 200m. Often bearing the CE mark, these are fitted with ICs from Shenzhen, Guangdong province, or Taiwan.

Models quoted between $15 and $27 consist of one- and two-way systems employing ICs from South Korea or Taiwan. Designs are configured with eight to 12 programmable functions and have an operating distance of 200 to 500m. Value-added attributes include an audio warning, a personal override code and remote power window roll-up.

More expensive car alarms are two-way systems with 10 to 15 customizable features. Fitted with ICs from the EU or the US, these are capable of transmitting over an expanse of up to 1,000m. Among the functions usually integrated into such designs are keyless entry, remote engine start, real-time in-car temperature display and battery voltage monitoring.

Compliance with CE, FCC and E-Mark requirements is common in the midrange and high end.

For motorcycle alarms, options at the $5 to $12 segment are one-way types with a transmission distance of about 100m. Two-way variants are at least $10 for sets having a range of 100 to 500m.

Note:This article was originally published by Global Sources, a leading business-to-business media company and a primary facilitator of trade with China manufacturers and India suppliers, providing essential sourcing information to volume buyers through our e-magazines, trade shows and industry research.

All price quotes in this report are in US dollars unless otherwise specified. FOB prices were provided by the companies interviewed only as reference prices at the time of interview and may have changed.

Disclaimer: All product images are provided by the companies interviewed and are for reference purposes only. Those product images featuring products with trademarks, brand names or logos are not intended for sale. We, our affiliates, and our affiliates' respective directors, officers, employees, representatives, agents or contractors, do not accept and will not have any responsibility or liability for product images (or any part thereof) which infringe on any intellectual property or other rights of a third party.

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