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Date: Thu, 15 Sep 2005 11:06:41 -0400
From: "gw" <>
Subject: Re: What does "built on the same platform" mean?

"Johannes" <> wrote in message > > > gw wrote: > > > > "Johannes" <> wrote in message > > > > > > > > > > > "" wrote: > > > > > > > > A platform in the sense of a engineering platform is something (engine, > > > > chasse, frame, ect.)which has been constructed with certain attributes > > > > and operating limits. Thing can be added to that platform as long as > > > > they do not exceed the limits of the core platform. So with that in > > > > mind you can see how several vehicles could be designed off one > > > > platform. > > > > > > <naughty schoolboy> > > > But most modern cars don't have chassis, they have monocoque steel bodies. > > > Engines can be shared between many types of cars, not necessarily from > > > the same family or platform. > > > </naughty schoolboy> > > > > Unibody construction still leaves room for "branding" of most of the body > > panels - front and rear clip, door skins, etc. You will see that unibody > > vehicles of the same platform usually share the same greenhouse (roof and > > glass) structure. For example, the Pontiac Grand Am, Oldsmobile Achieva, and > > Buick Skylark are all "N-body" cars, yet the body styling is 3 different > > forms of ugly. Drivetrain, suspension, and most of the running gear are > > interchangeable. > > Ford Focus and Volvo S40/V50 doesn't seem to have much in common. I did say "usually" - especially where domestic (USA) GM is concerned. From Car & Driver Feb 2004: "Although Volvo designed the S40, it can't take full credit for developing the car, which shares architecture with the Mazda 3 and next-generation Ford Focus. Engineers from Ford, Mazda, and Volvo collaborated on the C1 platform, contributing to and drawing from the development pool. The fruits of this labor came to be known as "global shared technologies," or the basic components-underbody, suspension layout, steering, etc.-utilized by the three brands. According to a Volvo engineer, the shared components consist of "everything that doesn't make the brand." In other words, Ford and Mazda couldn't grab everything they wanted from Volvo's safety bag." End quote Note "underbody, suspension layout, steering, etc." They can still stick their own body, drivetrain, interior, etc. on the underpinnings. Just because the body tubs differ in appearance, does not mean that suspension mounting points, wheelbase, and basic design philosophy and geometry cannot be shared. This is the concept of "platform". It is not necessarily the exact same unibody stamping used by Ford, Volvo, and Mazda - they need to keep their own identities to some extent.

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