Interview with Dipl. Ing. Markus Schachner

Director Design and Development

To overview

Interview mit DI Markus Schachner

Leitung Entwicklung und Konstruktion

Mr. Schachner, as the chief developer, you are responsible at Rosenbauer for the engineering of the new PANTHER. How many hours and how many cups of coffee have been invested in its development?

With its numerous functions, the new PANTHER is certainly one of the most complex fire fighting vehicles. In contrast to European municipal vehicles, the PANTHER is based on a chassis specially developed at Rosenbauer for use as an aircraft rescue and fire fighting vehicle. The development of such a comprehensive complete vehicle therefore demands a competent and interdisciplinary development team, which, in the case of this vehicle, consisted of more than 50 development engineers, prototype constructors, and test engineers. Concerning the number of cups of coffee during the development of the new PANTHER, I am certain that the amount of all cups of these 50 people together would completely fill a water tank on the new PANTHER 4×4.

„The hardest thing was keeping the innovations and the look of the new PANTHER secret up to the product launch.“

How long did it take you to decide on the design of the new PANTHER?

The design development process is part of an overall development process, and quite early on started with the question “How would I like to position the vehicle in the market and which vehicle characteristics do we really want to develop strongly?” Keep in mind that the PANTHER had, in its last generation, strongly influenced the Rosenbauer brand and became the flagship of our product range. Further developing these characteristics with the new PANTHER and loading it with even more innovations occupied a critical and time-consuming period of several months during the development of the new vehicle.


Which part of the new PANTHER did you work on the longest?

Rather than focusing on one structural component, I would like to extend this to a vehicle component. The cabin of the new PANTHER as the central driver’s workspace, operator terminal, and team space all at the same time has a whole lot of tasks to fulfill. During the design phase, we need to take into account legal requirements, such as those for passenger safety, standard-based regulations of the international application standards such as, for example, those of the NFPA (National Fire Protection Association), but also criteria in the areas of ergonomics, lighting, and vision. Reconciling all this and uniting it with the requirements of the exterior and interior design specifications to create a functional total system was surely the most time-intensive task in the development of the new PANTHER.