Process Chain in Automotive Industry - Present Day Demands versus Long Term Open CAD/CAM Strategies

• The automotive industry was a pioneer in using CAD/CAM technology. Now the car manufacturers development process is almost completely done with this technology. Substantial initiative for the standardisation of CAD/CAM technics comes from the automotive industry, as e.g. for neutral CAD data interfaces. The R&D departments of German car manufacturers have founded a working group ii with the aim to develop a common long term CAD/CAM strategy. One important result is the concept of a future CAx iii architecture based on the standard data structure STEP iv . The commitment of the car manufactures to STEP and open system architectures is in contradiction to their attitude towards suppliers and subcontractors: Recently, more and more contractors are contractually bound to use exactly the same CAD system as the orderer. The German car industry tries to find a way out of this contradiction and to improve the co-operation between the companies in short term. Therefore they proposed a "Dual CAD Strategy", i.e. to put improvements in CAD communication into practice which are possible today - even proprietary solutions - and in parallel to invest in strategic concepts to prepare tomorrow's open system landscape.

$Rev: 13581$