VW Passat

Development Support

Bertrandt Wolfsburg Supports New Passat Development
At the beginning of February, the first pictures of the new Passat were given an enthusiastic reception in the automotive world. As from March 2005, the best seller has been out on Europe’s roads. Bertrandt Wolfsburg played a role in the development of "the most comfortable Passat of all times". The Bertrandt team collaborated on projects with the Volkswagen development department and with a range of system partners. Services from Bertrandt’s extensive range were tailor-made to ensure that they met the individual requirements of each customer optimally.

Carefully designed electronics
The vehicle had to accommodate more than 3.5 km of cable to ensure the correct functioning of the electrical system. A number of new electronic features presented a challenge for Bertrandt. These included the new "coming home" and "leaving home" functions, which offer the driver the safety of additional lights at the push of a button when getting into or out of the vehicle in the dark. The electronic handbrake, which is also operated at the push of a button, is another sixth-generation innovation.

Space had to be found for the numerous cables, connectors and protectors. Bertrandt had been working with the main system supplier in this area for more than five years, before starting the joint project for the new Passat. The technical CAD support provided by the Bertrandt team for this project was another collaborative milestone. The tasks included creating wiring diagrams, developing a wiring kit package and investigating the available installation space, to ensure that everything run smoothly right through to the start of production.

Bumpers developed to improve pedestrian safety<//strong>

The Bertrandt team was responsible for developing the bumpers for the variant and saloon models right through to planning release. For the next stage of development until the start of production, Bertrandt was chosen as partner by the system suppliers Rehau and Peguform.

With the input of extensive expertise and innovative ideas, a bumper system was produced that met the design and technology requirements. The close proximity of the developers had a positive impact; during the one-year development period, Rehau moved into Bertrandt’s premises. As part of the joint project with Volkswagen’s technical development team, the latest European pedestrian safety guidelines, which are coming into effect as from October 2005, were taken into account. In future, new models in crash tests must demonstrate that pedestrians are better protected in the event of an impact.

The Bertrandt vehicle safety team provided additional support by designing the head impact areas on the vehicle bonnet. The EEVC WG17 and Japanese NCAP guidelines were taken into account for the head, lower leg and upper leg impact areas

Interior developed in collaboration with system suppliers 

Bertrandt actively worked together with system partners on developing the seats, including, for example, the drawer and storage compartments under the seat and the fire extinguisher mounting. Bertrandt engineers carried out package tests of the seat air conditioning and monitored the quality requirements.

The foam seat cushions for the front and rear seats were also produced by Bertrandt. The team developed all the design variants for the Trendline, Comfortline, Comfortline Leather, Highline and Sportline models from the concept phase right through to productionThe thermoplastic carpet, which acts as sound insulation, combines environmental awareness with the quality standards of cars from the upper mid-sized sector. The carpet, which has cotton fibre padding, has excellent sound insulation properties and is made mainly of recycled materials. The Bertrandt team was responsible for designing the shape of this acoustic component, taking into account all model variants, including right-hand drive versions.

Component endurance testing
Another part of the project involved testing the doors and tailgates using Bertrandt’s own testing equipment, which is certified by Volkswagen. The endurance tests of the doors and tailgates consisted of more than 100 000 load-cycle changes under different climatic conditions. The equipment and electronics/electrics were included in the same test process. Bertrandt also met the challenge of incorporating and coordinating the tests of the "door assembly" departments in order to save costs.

Virtual testing of the front end and interior of the car
The virtual car is playing an ever more important role in the development process. During the development of the new Passat, the Wolfsburg team, together with the type approval managers from Volkswagen, provided virtual testing for the virtual front end of the car with all its assemblies and drive components. The team was also responsible for testing the function, the installation space and the wide range of variants of the entire interior in the virtual car.

Integrating the sunroof
Bertrandt Wolfsburg was also given the assignment of integrating the Volkswagen sunroof into the new model range. The assignment included positioning and designing the roof cutout and the gutter and the concept development and design of the sunroof reinforcement frame.