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Heavy-duty VW: the tailored and modularized trucks

September 21 2020

Regardless of the cabin, the chassis is always the same in the new heavy-duty VW family, which has more than ten variations when thinking only of the combination between the two suspension options and up to three wheelbase dimensions. With this modularity, the VWCO offer allows customers to configure the vehicle for maximum productivity. Added to this is all the robustness already characteristic of the brand's products and the result is felt quite significantly in the total cost of the operation, the so-called TCO.Chassis - Considered the backbone of the vehicle because it houses about 90% of the vehicle's parts, the chassis of the new vehicles was designed by Volkswagen Caminhões e Ônibus engineers from all the know-how accumulated by professionals in years of experience in the segment, either with other VW models or with the MAN TGX line. The objective of the rigorous development was to make vehicles as light as possible, culminating in maximum load capacity. This effort by VWCO professionals can culminate in a vehicle weight reduction of more than 700 kg when considered the lightest version of the truck (equipped with the smallest tank, aluminum wheels and air suspension).

All the parts of the project underwent a rigid and careful structural calculation study, aiming at maximizing robustness with the lowest possible weight, with the new design and materials that ensure the highest payload capacity. This work also fulfilled its purpose of facilitating maintenance, both by the communization of components and by novelties such as the battery cover positioned in order to speed up access.

Axles - The new rear axle ratios are a separate chapter and deserve to be highlighted. The set is designed to provide the best performance and lowest fuel consumption for the vehicle, with the customer being able to choose the axle ratio that suits their operation, with the support of the VWCO dealer sales consultant. In addition to the performance, the models are differentiated by the additional comfort of a completely new steering system to make the experience at the wheel smooth.

Within the brand's tailor-made concept, the same chassis can come with three wheelbase options, optimized for the best load distribution and to be able to run with the implement in the maximum length allowed by Brazilian legislation, resulting in a greater traction capacity, which can reach up to 125 tons in the off-road model and varying between 53 tons in the 6x2 or 74 tons in the 6x4 road version. To have a comparison parameter: before, the VW line reached a maximum of 63 tons on the road.

In VW Meteor 28.460 6x2 and 29.520 6x4 models, the wheelbase can be 3,200mm, 3,400mm or 3,600 mm. In the Constellation, the wheelbase will be 3,200 mm for the off-road 6x4.

Suspension - Another component developed by VWCO Engineering for the best operating result is the suspension, which in some configurations can even represent a reduction of 170 kilos in the total weight of the vehicle. Whether in the metallic or pneumatic version, the automaker's professionals developed sets that best adapt to the Brazilian operating reality.

For the VW Meteor, the version with eight air pockets is available in all variations of the model, whether in the 6x2 or 6x4. The metallic one with two beams of parabolic springs in the front and three beams in the rear can equip the 28.460 6x2 with wheelbase of 3,600 mm or the 29.520 6x4 with any wheelbase. Meanwhile, the VW Constellation 33.460 model has a metallic suspension.

The air suspension comes with an intelligent system for reading the load carried per axle and with the ability to redistribute in order to balance the weight on each axle. The driver also has the option of programming the air pockets to adjust the height of the implement when loading or unloading the vehicle. All performed by remote control, from inside the cabin.

The heavy-duty for off-road operation also has an important attribute: its rear axles come with reduced hubs, ideal for applications with high performance in heavy off-road transport.

Tanks - All models will have two tanks, with capacities ranging from 630 to 940 liters, according to the chosen wheelbase. With the exception of off-road, all are aluminum. The heavy-duty VW also has a tank for 100 liters of Arla 32, the largest autonomy in the category, which maximizes productivity by avoiding the need for filling during the trip.

More news and safety - As if so many variations weren't enough, VWCO will still offer the customer, among the options, vertical exhaust and electric tilting. Another possibility will be an extra differential lock protection for severe operations on the VW Constellation 6x4 model. The heavy-duty VW Constellation also comes with a support behind the cabin, in preparation for applications that require the repositioning of the pneumatic and electrical connection system between the tractor and the implement, another request coming directly from the market in customer tests.

In addition to all the points mentioned, Constellation becomes the first vehicle of the Constellation series to be equipped with ABS brakes.