Modular Platform Could Underpin Up to Half of Global VW Group Models
New MQB initiative, introduced on 2013 Audi A3, looks to cut costs, reaction time needed to capitalize on emerging trends.
The initiative, which will begin this summer, is meant to cut costs and reduce production schedules while allowing Volkswagen to adapt more quickly to trends in emerging and established markets worldwide, in which the automaker currently boasts 200 models across its badges. Some other automakers, including Mercedes-Benz, already use a modular platform, though Volkswagen's plan is unique in its scale.
Automotive News says that the platform "standardizes the engine positioning and the distance between the front axle and pedal box," and that the "width, length and wheelbase can expand or contract according to model." The article also says some analysts predict the platform could account for almost half of Volkswagen's production. The MLB platform, supporting "bigger vehicles with longitudinally mounted engines," and the MSB platform for rear-engine sports cars will round out Volkswagen's other offerings.
Development of the MBQ platform began in 2007 under Ulrich Hackenberg, who at the time took over as Volkswagen's Group's board member for research and development. The platform can accommodate everything from gasoline and diesel engines to gas-electric hybrid and pure EV powertrains.
While the benefits of a modular global platform are apparent, the risks become exponential in the case of any widespread recalls.
[Source: Automotive News.]
EXPLORE NEW CARS
MORE ON MSN AUTOS
ABOUT EXHAUST NOTES
Cars are cool, and here at MSN Autos we love everything about them, but we also know they're more than simply speed and style: a car is an essential tool, a much-needed accessory to help you get through your day-to-day life. What you drive is also one of the most important investments you can make, so we'll help you navigate your way through the car buying and ownership experiences. We strive to be your daily destination for news, notes, tips and tricks from across the automotive world. So whether it's through original content from our world-class journalists or the latest buzz from the far corners of the Web, Exhaust Notes helps you make sense of your automotive world.
Have a story idea? Tip us off at email@example.com.