The Volkswagen Group could share its ground-breaking MQB platform with other car manufacturers in the medium to long term, according to Michael Macht, VW Group’s board member responsible for group production. VW will be using the MQB platform technology on its Audi A3, VW Golf and Seat Leon models as well as on other future vehicles.
VW designs the MQB platform to be very flexible so that it could be used to underpin almost any vehicle, allowing the group to save a lot of money. It also gives the group the capacity to build any car – present or future models – on the platform used on the same production line, giving the company a significant advantage in production flexibility.
Macht said the company is planning to optimize the MQB platform during the next two to three years, and intends to keep the technology exclusive during that period.
Macht said that although the group does not wish to share this radical technology, it may sell it in the medium to long term if there’s an opportunity to do so. The group is expected to produce more than six million cars by 2018 using this platform, which would spread across its VW, Audi, seat and Skoda brands.
VW Group chief Martin Winterkorn said that the group expects to receive the fruits of its investment in the MQB technology starting in 2014. He estimated that the VW Group has made an investment of around £50 billion over four years to develop and implement the MQB platform.
Winterkorn said that the new VW Golf will be a much better model than the car it replaces, thanks to the MQB platform. He added that although the group has invested heavily in the MQB technology, they are convinced that it will bring them more benefits.
The bulk of the investment was for developing the MQB platform and preparing the group’s sites for production in 2012 and 2013, Winterkorn said. [source: Autocar]