VW Teases Autonomous Sedan with New EV Platform
March 24, 2021—Volkswagen will join other automakers in developing a single battery-electric vehicle platform that will be able to support multiple models, according to multiple recent reports.
As the top OEMs make big promises on electrification, it makes sense that some might want to get the most bang for their buck to focus on a single platform. This is, after all, a significant revision of the traditional vehicle powertrain and structure.
VW’s will be named SSP, which stands for Scalable Systems Platform, reports Motor Authority. It will be the evolution of the current MEB platform, which underlies the ID.4, and the more premium PPE platform. The company will begin with a standardized battery cell design in 2023.
The VW ID.4 turned heads as the company’s current production-ready EV offering. Looking ahead toward this new platform, VW is already teasing a high-tech sedan that will be based off the SSP and is planned for a 2026 release. It’s name is Project Trinity.
Volkswagen says this model will “set standards” for range, charging speed and digitalization. That includes plans for Level 4 autonomy (brush up on the autonomy levels here). That means fully capable, driverless travel.
“We are using our economies of scale to make autonomous driving available to many people and to build a learning neural network. In this way, we are creating the conditions for the continuous exchange of data from our vehicle fleet – for example, on the traffic situation, on obstacles or on accidents,” says Ralf Brandstätter, VW CEO, in a press release.
Little else is known about Project Trinity at this time, but it’s clear that VW sees this model as a turning point for the technology that will appear in future EVs. It’s important to note that VW is putting a lot of emphasis on its software development in addition to the hardware elements.
Repairers Take Note
Each company wants to create the best platform and have it all to itself. That means proprietary technology, parts, and software. As shops already know from ADAS work, there isn’t a lot of crossover between OEMs for the use of tools and equipment. Shops might look more closely at specializing in certain makes and models if they can’t afford to buy into multiple OEM ecosystems.
Right to Repair regulations could help to open up compatibility a bit, but the extent is unclear right now.