Employees file numerous patents
In 2009, employees of the Volkswagen Group filed 1,790 patent applications, 1,230 of them in Germany and 560 abroad. The majority of these innovations related to driver assistance systems and infotainment topics as well as to hybrid and bodywork technology. Once again, our employees documented their exceptional innovative strength with the large number and the technological quality of the applications.
External R&D know-how integrated
In addition to its internal resources, the Volkswagen Group draws on the expertise of its suppliers in the development process to be able to expand its model range with innovative, sustainable vehicle concepts. Close cooperation at an early stage between internal and external capacity is essential if we are to successfully complete projects to the standard required and within reduced development times. We mostly integrate the external expertise into creative processes, but also into virtual technologies and megatrends.
External know-how is chiefly used in support services, in downstream processes such as series production management and in activities that are not customer-facing and generate improvements. As the expertise of subsequent system suppliers is particularly useful when developing modules and components, collaboration with these partners will be systematically driven forward and extended for the benefit of both sides.