The cross-sharing of platforms and technologies between models in the automotive industry is not exactly new but in the recent years, many automakers have focused on this even more. The Volkswagen Group is one such company and we can clearly see this in models within the group.
Volkswagen has rolled out a new and important piece of technology that will be used in their vehicles starting this year. It is the MQB platform which is Modularer Querbaukasten in German. In English it means Modular Transverse Matrix platform. Flexibility and reduced production costs are the key reasons for this platform.
Volkswagen will build 30 models under this particular platform. It covers all models above the group’s New Small models (Volkswagen Up) and below the Modular Longitudinal platform (Audi A4). It can be built in multiple wheelbases.
One of the unique attributes of the platform is the uniform engine mounting position for all available engines, including hybrids and renewable/alternative engines. This uniform engine mounting position will also aid in the flexible usage of transmissions within this platform. Volkswagen has also stated that this platform will reduce production costs up to twenty percent compared to the current generation platform. With these savings, the company intends to improve content and build quality and also at the same time, it will bolster corporate profit.
The upcoming Audi A3 sedan and Volkswagen Bulli concept, which were previewed last year in Geneva, were built on the MQB platform. Both cars showed flexible features which include track width and seat height. Plus, it has shorter overhangs due to the new front crash structure. The new models on the MQB platforms will use a significant amount of aluminium in them. Not only bolt-on parts will be aluminium but also parts such as crossmember and floorpans. This will reduce the weight of the new cars significantly compared to the current generation.
Volkswagen’s MQB platform offers flexibility in which the company can tailor to specific markets in a more cost effective way and these costs reduction will help the company to focus on new market ventures. At the same time, it is also possible for them to introduce interior quality that was only previously seen in its higher end models.
Expect to see the new platform used on various models within the Volkswagen Group and since the top most picture displays a cut-away picture of a car with Volkswagen wheels, it could be the next-generation Golf.
Photo credit: Auto Evolution
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