Monday, 23 June 2014
Vauxhall invests £185 million in Vivaro
Vauxhall claims to have invested £185 million, including £76 million in manufacturing facilities and £90 million in vendor tooling and special equipment for its all-new Vivaro.
The van, according to the company, secures 1,200 jobs at the UK’s last van manufacturing plant after workers won a 10-year contract and the £185 million investment.
Thanks to the outstanding attitude and work ethic of the workforce, the Luton plant beat world class competition from across Europe to build the new van.
Rival Ford shut its Transit factory in Southampton last year making Vauxhall’s Luton facility the sole flag bearer for UK van manufacturing – on a site where over eight million vehicles have been built since 1905.
The plant is significant contributor to the local and national economies building nearly a million Vivaro vans since 2001 including 44,000 vans built in 2013. The factory is a major exporter with 52 per cent of production destined for European markets.
Service firms around the country will also benefit from £600 million of new business over the life of the new Vivaro with 40 per cent of content sourced locally from UK suppliers. This is up by 60 per cent on the current van. The new suppliers are:
International Automotive Components, Coleshill, West Midlands (carpets)
Tenneco-Walker, Gwent (exhausts)
Shape Corp, Coventry (front cross member)
TI Group Automotive, Deeside (fuel tanks)
Mitsumi Electro, Hayes, Middlesex (GPS antenna)
Kautex Textron, Hengoed, Mid Glamorgan (wash tanks and hoses)
In addition, Dunstable-based Magna Seating produces seats solely for Vauxhall after Ford’s Southampton plant shut last year.
Employing 53 people and mirroring shift patterns with the Luton van plant, Magna makes single front seats, double front seats and rear seats for the new Vivaro.
A new production line has been installed to build seats for the new van. On average Magna makes over 118,000 seats per year or 506 per day.
Also, Milton Keynes-based MKP make 12 parts for the new Vivaro including various cross members and bulkhead panels.
A family owned business with 200 employees, 58 per cent of MKP clients are first tier automotive manufacturers including Aston Martin, Bentley and Lotus.
“The all-new Vivaro van is of critical importance to Vauxhall and its manufacturing facility in Luton,” said Tim Tozer, Vauxhall’s chairman and managing director. “I’m very proud of the men and women who build this vehicle to world class levels of quality and productivity.
“Our customers will be delighted with the new Luton-built Vivaro. It offers the comfort and design of a passenger car but with class-leading practicality, improved cargo dimensions and excellent payload capability.”
The New Vivaro was designed by a team led by Luton-born Malcolm Ward. In his role as Vauxhall/Opel’s design director, Ward follows in the footsteps of both his father and grandfather who both worked at Vauxhall.
"The new Vivaro is testament to the skills and dedication of the Luton workforce who have once again put together a world class vehicle,” said Len McCluskey, General Secretary of Unite.
"Not only is it great news for British manufacturing, but represents yet another proud milestone in Luton's rich history of motor manufacturing, underlining how jobs and investment can be secured when employers like Vauxhall work closely with their workforce and Unite.
"More investment like this is needed to create the high skilled jobs and security we need to rebalance the economy and bring growth to all."
Also looking forward to a bright futures is Vauxhall’s other UK manufacturing plant located in Ellesmere Port, Cheshire where production of the next generation Astra compact car begins in 2015. Workers at Ellesmere Port won a similar long term contract to their colleagues in Luton. The agreement runs in to the next decade and secures a £125 million investment and 1,600 jobs.