Extract from the preface:
Since the publication of the third edition, the framework conditions have changed severely. The enterprises of the automotive industry are facing ever-increasing challenges. Within a few years, the products of the automotive industry – primarily in the course of electrification and digitalization – underwent fast-paced advances in development, and concurrently have become ever more complex. The scope and depth of documentation have increased accordingly, and high quality standards certainly continue to apply.
Information and documentation and their archiving, which lie within the context and conflict areas of the aforementioned challenges, should therefore be viewed and regulated integrally. But since this is the self-responsibility of the respective enterprise, the fourth edition of this Volume 1 “Documented Information and Retention” is limited to describing the handling of information and documentation within the framework of the product life cycle.
The critical features listed in VDA volume 1 of the 3rd edition are referenced in VDA “Product Development: Process description Special Characteristics”. The information about archiving locations and media systems from VDA volume 1 of the 3rd edition has not changed. The writing is to be understood as guideline. As a guideline, its application is voluntary. But if it is applied or referenced, the described requirements must be met.