Embedded software development for automotive applications is widely considered as a significant source of innovation and improvements in cars. However, software development processes do not address well the needs of large-scale distributed real-time systems, like the ones automobiles do (or soon will) contain. The paper introduces a vision for the model-based development of embedded software, which is based on the broad-spectrum modeling of the applications in the context of a larger system, formal (and computer-supported) analysis of models, and automatic synthesis of the application(s). The paper also describes some initial steps taken to build the infrastructure for supporting such a process in the form of modeling and model transformation tools. The paper concludes with a list of challenging research problems.