Friday, 14 November 2014

VW lays Crafter foundation stone

The foundation stone has been laid for Volkswagen’s new plant in Września, near Poznań where the next generation Volkswagen Crafter will be built, with production set to begin in the second half of 2016.

Dr Leif Östling, member of the board of management of Volkswagen AG, noted: “As a result of this investment, Volkswagen Group’s workforce in Poland will grow to over 16,000 employees in the next few years. This will increase the importance of Poland as an international automobile location.”

The building site, 30 miles from Poznań, covers an area of 220 hectares, equivalent to the size of more than 300 football fields. The first construction work is now under way to level and pave the site with the first vehicles will leave the assembly line in 2016.

“Today, we produce around 170,000 vehicles with almost 7,000 workers, not only for Poland but for the whole of Europe and beyond,” declared Dr Eckhard Scholz, chairman of the board of management of Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles Brand. “This makes Volkswagen Poznań the second pillar for the brand – after the main assembly plant in Hannover. In future, this pillar will provide even more support, acting as the foundation stone in the literal sense of the word with a new plant and a new vehicle.”

The first Volkswagen Crafter vehicles will be delivered starting the second half of 2016. The new plant is planning to achieve an annual production capacity of up to 100,000 vehicles.

                            Robots for body-in-white

A modern paint shop will be built on the plant site as well as halls for body assembly, vehicle assembly and a supplier park with logistics areas Swedish robot builder ABB is already a major suppliers of industrial robots for both welding and parts handling, and can be expected to be in the lead therefore as a potential vendor of such equipment.

Up to 3,000 employees will work in the new facility. Volkswagen's investment will also help automotive suppliers create new jobs. At present, 40 per cent of parts supplied to the Volkswagen plant in Poznań are from Polish companies.

Jens Ocksen, chairman of the board of management of Volkswagen Poznań, stressed the advantages which will result from locating the new plant in the vicinity of the existing plant in Poznań. This applies to production, logistics, and supplier companies, as well as to the recruitment of new skilled workers.

“Września offers the best economic, infrastructural and labour market conditions. Building the plant in Biełężyce, near Września, is a key element in implementing the strategic and global aims of the Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles brand,” said Ocksen.

Volkswagen Poznań has been in existence for over 20 years. Here, the Volkswagen Caddy city delivery van and the Volkswagen Transporter have been built for the past 10 years worldwide markets.

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