The Association of German Engineers
The Association of German Engineers (VDI) > Engineering > VDI Societies > Automotive and Traffic Systems Technology
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VDI Society Automotive and Traffic Systems Technology

VDI Society Automotive and Traffic Systems Technology

The VDI Society Automotive and Traffic Systems Technology (VDI-FVT) is one of the largest Societies within the VDI, comprising more than 26,000 people (more than 6,000 of them students), and one of the biggest member societies of the international umbrella organization of automotive engineers’ societies, FISITA. These two facts alone show the importance of the German car industry within the national economy and within the world market.

Germany prides itself to have invented the modern internal combustion engine and the automobile driven by it, and since the times of the pioneers Carl Benz, Gottlieb Daimler and Wilhelm Maybach, German engineers have strived to perfection them. Besides a fierce competition that characterises the car market to this day, and often sees German brands as a worldwide benchmark for high technological standards, one of the means of achieving ever better technology is the exchange of knowledge – the only resource that gets bigger as we share it. Not surprisingly, technical conferences and congresses have been a core activity of the FVT for many decades. These conferences of long-standing tradition, but very contemporary content, are today hosted by VDI’s subsidiary VDI Wissensforum. Many of them feature simultaneous translation into English and are attended by international audiences. Quite a number of them see more than 1,000 engineers flock together at least every two years, and comprise an exhibition where OEMs and suppliers show off their latest high-end technical solutions.


Given the international scope of the German manufacturers and suppliers and the importance of export to their business, the VDI-FVT traditionally plays an active role within FISITA, the international federation of automotive engineers’ societies. Former FVT presidents have served as FISITA presidents, and in the wake and aftermath of FISITA’s 2008 congress, FVT representatives have taken over important tasks on FISITA’s board. For more information on FISITA’s activities, please refer to their website.


The VDI is also the intellectual sponsor of Formula Student Germany, one of the biggest, and according to its very international participants, best-organized Formula Student events worldwide, which takes place at the Hockenheim circuit (of formula one fame) each year on the first weekend of August. Many volunteers help to make this event happen, and many of them have also an important record of voluntary activity within the VDI, who has helped the organization since the very first time in 2005 to find the funding and to recruit the experts who sit on the juries. Every member of a participating team from a German university automatically joins VDI.


In accordance with a general strategy of the VDI, FVT has decided from 2012 to focus on the issue of actively participating in the public debate that informs political decisions on issues of transport and mobility. While mobility is absolutely necessary for the functioning of modern societies and has helped better the lives of all of us, it is clear that it has many undesirable side effects, and that every means of transportation today is under scrutiny regarding its impact on the environment, the cost in terms of resources its operation requires, and its side effects on human well-being in general.

It is VDI’s aim to provide independent expert knowledge to ensure that public opinion and political authorities understand the often complex underlying technical problems, and that the measures and resources deployed to reduce the undesired impact of mobility have an optimum effect, in the general interest of society and all concerned. The FVT is currently re-establishing its eight Technical divisions to address different subjects and elaborate positions regarding various aspects of Transport and Vehicle Technology. Within the large network of VDI and its 12 societies, FVT can tap vast resources of knowledge and expertise and team up with engineers from a large array of technical branches in order to make sure that every aspect of a question is covered.