By on August 21, 2010

In June, we reported about a catfight between Porsche and Audi. The bitching and eye-scratching was about who will design the kit for all future sports cars of the Volkswagen empire. The contenders: Audi and Porsche. The thinking was that the fight is just for show. And it was. If Automobilwoche [sub] has it straight, then Porsche will not just develop the mid-engined kit for all sportscars. Porsche will lead the engineering of the complete kit and kaboodle.

Currently, there are two families of erector kits which can be assembled into all kinds of cars at Volkswagen. They have Teutonic names like “Modularer Querbaukasten” (MQB)  and “Modularer Längsbaukasten” (MLB). The MQB has the engine “quer,” or transverse (like in most Volkswagen, SEATs, Skodas etc.). The MLB has the engine “längs,” or longitudinal, like in the larger Audis, future Bentleys etc. The quer kit falls under the purview of Wolfsburg, the längs kit is under the guiding hand of Ingolstadt. Everybody thought, Porsche will develop an “MMB” (Modularer Mittelbaukasten) for Mittelmotor (mid-engined) cars, and everybody will be busy and happy.

According to Automobilwoche, there won’t be three kits, there will be one. It’s called MSB (Modularer Standardbaukasten), which is … see you have already figured it out without knowing a word of German. Porsche got the job to design a kit with the parts for anything in the Volkswagen realm.

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12 Comments on “Back To The Past: Porsche Engineers To Build Foundation For All Of Volkswagen...”


  • avatar
    Paul Niedermeyer

    It’s 1938 again!

  • avatar
    Educator(of teachers)Dan

    Little did Daddy know his boys would go on to consult on engineering projects like; the Titanic and Olimpia, the Tacoma Narrows Bridge, and right before retirement: Hyatt Regency Hotel Walkway. The lesson, be careful what toys you give your kids.

    At least VW customers will likely be more comfortable with Porsche engineered VWs then Porsche customers would be with VW engineered Porsches.

    • 0 avatar
      Silvy_nonsense

      I assume that first paragraph is supposed to be really clever based on knowledge of something or other. Could you please explain it to those of us who don’t understand what the he11 you are talking about?

    • 0 avatar
      Educator(of teachers)Dan

      http://listverse.com/2007/12/04/top-10-worst-engineering-disasters/

      If you don’t know about the HMS Titanic and her sister ship Olymipic, I can’t help you. I’m a consumate wiseguy, that was just the first crazy thing that came out of my brain. Bertel almost always uses the kind of pictures that make you want to come up with a witty retort.

    • 0 avatar
      Silvy_nonsense

      OK, I think I get it. Those are all engineering disasters and you think this probably won’t work out too well either. I was trying to understand those things in the context of VW as in “What did VW (or Porsche) have to do with the Tacoma Narrows Bridge?” I’ll avoid sharp, pointy things until my brain starts to work a little better (more gooder?).

  • avatar
    Silvy_nonsense

    VW has a history of defying logic based on the dictatorial whims of Ferdinand Piech and maybe this is just another ridiculous mandate that won’t work and will just end up being what they have now – three different modular architectures organized around engine placement?

    Is there anyone out there in comment land with auto platform engineering experience who can make some suggestions on how this might work?

  • avatar
    golf4me

    If I’m not mistaken, Porsche has made quite a bit of their money doing engineering for others, at least until they started doing financial hocus-pocus stuff. So, I don’t see that this should be anything new.

    However, it would be most logical to have VW do transverse platforms, Audi do longitudinal platforms, and Porsche do mid/rear platforms. That way they stick to what their “expertise” is. Not sure where thateaves Lambo and Bentley, bit I don’t care, I’ll never be able to afford either.

  • avatar

    Seems to make sense. Major components under the hood developed by Porsche. The other VW companies can concentrate on exterior & interior design plus marketing. Some engineering jobs will be lost, but the S&M side will make up for that.

    • 0 avatar
      Silvy_nonsense

      “Major components under the hood developed by Porsche.”

      That’s not what the article is about. It discusses the backbone architecture of the vehicles which is independent of specific “under the hood” components. Power train engineering is a separate discipline and area of responsibility.

      “Some engineering jobs will be lost”

      How do you know this? I don’t see anything in this article about job adds/losses and I don’t have a subscription to Automobilwoche, so I can’t read the source article. If you’ve read the source article and can substantiate your claim, please do so.

      Without knowing any specifics about how VAG plans to implement this strategy, its not appropriate to speculate about what, if anything, will happen to jobs.

      Based on this brief article, we have no idea whether employees will be physically shuffled around, if the employees will stay in place but get new leadership from Porsche or if the employees will stay in place and existing VW/Audi leadership in this area of expertise will be transferred to Porsche, if the employees will be transferred from the payroll of VW/Audi to Porsche, how VAG will manage the dialectic between what a “central overlord” will want to do vs. what the individual businesses believe they need, etc.

  • avatar
    Toyondai92

    Forget the article I want that toy!

  • avatar
    Toyondai92

    Forget the article I want that toy!

  • avatar
    chuckR

    An Audi interior in a Porsche would be sweet. I’ve always liked the chestnut leather baseball-stitched interior that was offered on the TT. If only they could play nicely together…..


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