The development of innovative vehicle systems is driven by the demand for improvement in comfort, reduction in fuel consumption, environmental protection and an increase in efficiency. A resultant trend is the substitution of mechanical systems by electrical solutions. A basic requirement is an optimized electrical power supply. During the development of the future electrical power supply, the following changes can be observed: 1) High power components require higher voltages. As a result, multi-voltage electrical power supply systems will appear. 2) Demands for increased availability and reliability require the introduction of state monitoring, redundant paths, components and functions. 3) The relationship between electrical load requirements, deliverable power and fuel consumption, force the introduction of electrical power supply management.These trends will be discussed, and the consequences of a future electrical power supply architecture derived from it. Through examples, practical possibilities are shown.