A Look at Volkswagen’s New MQB Platform for Front-Wheel-Drive Cars

There are more brands, more segments, and more cars than ever before. This is perhaps no more evident than within the Volkswagen Group, with its 10 marques and 200-plus models worldwide. Because of this, the übergroup has recognized the need to increase commonality in its quest to maximize profits. VW is now creating shared modular platforms to serve the needs of its different subsidiaries. The latest is called MQB.

Under the guidance of Audi engineers, the company has already rolled out the MLB platform. The German acronym roughly translates to modular longitudinal matrix, with longitudinal referring to engine orientation. It’s already in use on the Audi A6/A7, A4/A5, and Q5. Audi’s spaceframe flagship, the A8, also borrows from MLB, but its unique build puts it in a slightly different category.

From Modularer Längsbaukasten to Modularer Querbaukasten

Volkswagen engineers have been tasked with another platform, MQB—again an acronym, this one roughly translating to modular transverse matrix. And, you guessed it, the engines are transversely mounted. MQB will underpin everything from the tiny VW Up! to the next-generation Volkswagen Passat. Basically any VW Group product that mounts its engine sideways in front of the cabin will be MQB—if you’re the numbers type, that’s about 60 cars.

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