inside
The employee magazine
of the Volkswagen brand

Digitalization

Small box, big impact

Connectivity is a top priority for the new Tiguan. The OCU box ensures that the SUV can go online.

Precision work in the smallest of spaces: Michael Kretschmann screws in the mount for the OCU box.

We’re at Takt 6, an early station on the Tiguan production line in hall 12 of the Wolfsburg plant. This station plays a crucial role in connectivity for the SUV. This is where a small box called the Online Connectivity Unit (OCU) is installed. Hardly larger than a pack of cigarettes, this black plastic control unit with a plug inlet and an antenna connection handles all the communications for the Tiguan. Like a smartphone’s SIM card, this is what takes the Tiguan online. The OCU is the door to the Internet, and it supports the mobile online services for Car-Net.

A driverless vehicle approaches with a low hum. It pulls the assembly frame for the Tiguan’s cockpit from station to station. When it arrives at Takt 6, the cockpit already has countless cables and plug connections. Car-Net will now be installed, and the hour has come for the black box. Michael Kretschmann (39), one of six members of the cable team, screws a mount onto the module base and attaches it to the front of the rack, the core component of the on-board electronic system. This box will later be located on the left side of the steering column. It houses the on-board control unit, various relays, and the fuses. Kretschmann pushes the black OCU box into the top part of the rack.
After just a few simple steps, everything is plugged in and wired up.

Cockpit preassembly

Twenty-two people work in Assembly. They install everything that sits behind the instrument panel – cable harnesses, control units, heating element. The production line is some 150 meters long and divided into 22 takt points. Team members build about 660 cockpits on a normal day.

The rack houses the heart of the on-board electronics. This is where both the control unit and the OCU box are mounted.

The box is still in a dormant state, waiting to be activated. It will come to life only at the end of the Tiguan assembly process. The electronic components will be powered up and inspected during the ECOS test (Electronic Check-out System). Shortly before the car rolls from the production line at point 8, it will undergo another final test and the OCU will be started up. Car-Net will be awakened from its slumber and will be ready to take the Tiguan onto the Internet. The black box is what makes all this possible.