Volkswagen Group Testing Carbon Fiber Wheel Prototypes

Buried within a Press Release sent out to announce ThyssenKrupp and Maxion Wheels’ collaboration on Aluminum/Carbon Fiber Wheel development, the pair mentioned that prototypes were currently being testing by the Volkswagen Group vehicles.  In itself, the prospect of a Carbon Fiber wheel is certainly nothing new, but the technology being tested by the Volkswagen Group certainly is.

The group is currently at a very interesting spot in both the development of future hypercars aimed at replacing the now-deceased Porsche 918 Spyder and Bugatti Veyron, and unmatched efforts to increase fuel efficiency and develop hybrid drivetrains.  One tried and true method of achieving both goals would be lowering overall vehicle weight, more specifically reducing energy-draining rotational mass.  The extensive use of both Aluminum and Carbon Fiber panels have worked to help in this quest, so Carbon fiber wheels and a more widespread use of Carbon Ceramic brake rotors would be the next logical step.

Volkswagen certainly wouldn’t be the first to employ this technology on a road-going production vehicle, as Koenigsegg has been using Carbon wheels on their hypercars for the past few years, and Ford is including a Carbon wheel as standard equipment on the Shelby GT350R- a feature which is said to reduce unsprung weight by 13lbs per corner when compared to an aluminum equivalent.

As for a time frame for production availability, Thyssenkrupp and Maxion Wheels are still tight-lipped, but we wouldn’t be surprised to see them on the Veyron replacement, and slowing trickling their way to the more attainable models.

For more information, check out the full Press Release, here.