System Modules, The Impacts on Truck Cab Assembly 2001-01-2760
This paper will review and discuss the advantages and disadvantages of utilizing modular systems in vehicle assembly, particularly Medium Duty, Severe Service, and Heavy Duty trucks. Focus will be put on cab interior modules, as they were developed for the International 4000, 7000, and 8000 series trucks. For the purposes of this paper, “system” or “system module” refers to an assembly of components that can wholly or substantially perform its design function as a stand-alone unit. An example would be a vehicle seat assembly. A completed seat can perform its intended function sitting on the plant floor, as well as in the vehicle.
The impacts of the system module design approach on assembly processing, manufacturing complexity, reliability and quality, and design and validation will be discussed. Various levels of system modularity have been successfully used in recent years in many types of vehicle manufacturing, particularly in the automotive industry. However, the wide variety of vehicle applications and configurations that are inherent in the diverse customer needs of the medium duty, severe service, and heavy duty truck markets introduces new issues that are not necessarily significant in the manufacture of passenger cars.