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Innovative Roof Technologies

Innovative strength has been a decisive driver of corporate development since the company was established. With a keen awareness of trends, a deep understanding of the requirements of the automotive industry and a high level of development expertise, Webasto always remains a step ahead of its competitors.

Read more under Technologies and Trends.

Roof systems with lightweight construction technology

We have been supporting the automotive industry for years - among others with our lightweight construction technologies - in its efforts to reduce fuel consumption and, consequently, CO2 emissions. Webasto currently offers manufacturers three options:

- Lightweight and particularly tough polycarbonate with a wide variety of designs

- Fiber-reinforced composites, so-called polyurethane composites, that are characterized by their high level of rigidity and simultaneously low weight

- Webasto Glas ProTec®, a glass-plastic composite in which a PET film is applied to single-layer safety glass (ESG)

All three of these technologies are used in series production with several automobile manufacturers. Click this link if you would like to learn more about this.

The solar roof as an eco-innovation

It does not matter if vehicles are powered by a combustion engine or an electric/hybrid drive: both require electricity – either for the drivetrain or for ancillary devices (navigation, entertainment etc.).

Back in 1989, Webasto had already launched series production of a vehicle with a solar roof which generates electricity using integrated solar cells.

With combustion engines, electrical energy is primarily used to power auxiliary units, such as a vehicle's auxiliary ventilation system. With electric and hybrid vehicles, the energy generated by the solar cells can be stored in the vehicle's powertrain battery, thereby contributing to charging the battery.

The European Union approved our solar roofs as an eco-innovation in 2013. This seal of approval is given to pioneering vehicle-specific technologies that have been proven to reduce the CO2 emissions of new vehicles. Automobile manufacturers can offset this CO2 saving against the fuel consumption of the overall fleet.

Light in its most beautiful form

Ambient lighting from Webasto offers extra comfort. Lighting effects create a pleasant and individual atmosphere in the passenger compartment. The light elements are integrated into the guide rails of the roof system or the surface of the glass roof. But the roof element itself remains transparent.

The ambient lighting has been in series production since 2015 and has already received multiple awards from automobile manufacturers and leading institutions.

Looking into the future

Our vision of a future roof systems: At IAA Cars 2017 we exhibited the largest openable three-panel panorama roof to-date, with a total area of some 2.7 m2. This roof was also equipped with dynamic ambient lighting and switchable glazing that uses liquid crystal technology.

Our development teams around the world are working continuously on other new products and functionalities. These will also allow us to create added value for mobility.