Recently, there has been a significant growth in the variety of data acquisition systems used in vehicle testing in the auto industry. Although this has improved testing productivity significantly, it has resulted in the growth of systems that are incompatible with the engineer's work-station. This paper describes an integrated design methodology and the features of the Vehicle Data Acquisition System (VDAS) developed by the Ford Research Staff and used by various Ford Divisions for vehicle testing.The system consists of an industrialized IBM-PC/AT clone that is powered by the car battery. It has menu-driven, user friendly software with voice command capability, and has the ability to run data acquisition, analysis and graphics in the vehicle. This system was developed by maximizing off-the-shelf software and hardware while minimizing customization. This has allowed the design and development engineers to use the system without the programming support that is normally required by a system of equivalent functionality. The design methodology used has provided the flexibility to meet a variety of vehicle testing requirements. The system has had a significant impact on engineering productivity at Ford Motor Company.