Volkswagen’s new MQB platform under the microscope
Volkswagen is aiming to put both its products and its customers above everything else with the launch of its MQB A0 small car platform.
Here, we delve into why you should be excited about this latest strategy from the well-known German vehicle manufacturer:
An overview of the MQB platform
Meaning Modular Transverse Matrix, the MQB platform was launched by Volkswagen to standardise both vehicle components and production processes.
As a result, the vehicle manufacturer is now able to use the same assembly lines to produce a wide variety of vehicles — covering variants from many of its different brands. Volkswagen has also assured motorists that quality will remain at the highest possible level, as will extremely competitive costs.
Dr Frank Welsch, the development boss at Volkswagen, underlined: “We are still Volkswagen, but we want people to be more excited about our cars [and] we want to appeal to younger people. But with the qualities that our customers love, too.”
The Volkswagen Golf was the first model to be produced using the MQB platform, though the strategy can also be credited for forming the basis of 58 vehicles which have totalled eight million sales between them. As well as those making use of the Volkswagen badge, vehicles from Audi, SEAT and Skoda all feature within this initial group of vehicles.
The MQB’s standout features
There are four key features which can be seen from each vehicle that is built using the MQB platform:
- Enhanced designs — The forward relocation of the front wheels on every vehicle built on the MQB platform means that incredibly balanced proportions have been achieved. There’s also optimised use of space for occupants to enjoy too.
- Reduced emissions — Entirely redeveloped engine families have been introduced to all vehicles built on the MQB platform. These are regularly trimmed so that lower CO2 figures can be achieved through start-stop recuperation systems, active cylinder management in four-cylinder engines, EU-6 certification and a CNG option.
- Reversal of the weight spiral — Thanks to a blend of materials and ultra-modern construction principles, drivers of any vehicle built on the MQB platform can experience an enhanced driving experience while at the same time being assured lower fuel consumption.
- Safer and more comfortable vehicle designs — Since being introduced, the MQB platform has helped around 20 innovations introduced to the small car market. These include everything from aspects of vehicle safety to driver assistance tools and state-of-the-art infotainment technology.
The uniqueness of the MQB A0 platform
Volkswagen’s MQB A0 platform is specifically targeted towards the small car market and is unique from the rest of the strategy because:
- Cars being produced will deliver both weight and cost benefits.
- Advanced driver assistance technologies will be introduced not only to the small car market but to the entire vehicle scene.
- Length differences of more than one meter are being considered. As such, the MQB platform can be used to build vehicles that are as diverse as the Volkswagen Polo and the five-metre-long Volkswagen Atlas SUV.
Release details of the MQB A0 platform
When the next-generation model of the Volkswagen Polo launches towards the end of 2017, the MQB A0 platform will underpin its design.
Following this release, the platform is being earmarked to assist with the manufacture of the latest models of both the SEAT Ibiza and Skoda Fabia ranges. The Volkswagen Group is also planning to use the platform for a strategy whereby it will launch a series of smaller SUVs.