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The use of networks for communications between the electronic control units (ECU) of a vehicle in production cars dates from the beginning of the 1990s. The specific requirements of the different car domains have led to the development of a large number of automotive networks such as Local Interconnect Network, J1850, CAN, TTP/C, FlexRay, media-oriented system transport, IDB1394, etc. This paper first introduces the context of in-vehicle embedded systems and, in particular, the requirements imposed on the communication systems. Then, a comprehensive review of the most widely used automotive networks, as well as the emerging ones, is given. Next, the current efforts of the automotive industry on middleware technologies, which may be of great help in mastering the heterogeneity, are reviewed. Finally, we highlight future trends in the development of automotive communication systems.