n. A branch of engineering that unites the principles of mechanics and electronics.
Other Forms
Power-by-wire (electronic engine control), shift-by-wire (mechatronic shifting of the transmission), brake-by-wire (electronically-controlled disc brakes) and steer-by-wire (mechatronic steering) have been brought together to produce seamless drive-by-wire.

Whereas until now electronic control units have usually only had an effect on individual components, in the case of drive-by-wire a central computer, the PowertrainController, controls every aspect of vehicle handling.
—Geoff Paradise, “Star gazing — The way is clear for Mercedes,” The Daily Telegraph, April 27, 2002
1980 (earliest)
The fair features introduction of the so-called "mechatronics" products — unification of machinery and electronics, and a focus on high speed and high productivity.
—“Int'l Machine Tool Fair Slated For Oct. 31-Nov. 11,” Jiji Press Ticker Service, October 09, 1980
Some Related Words