Wednesday, 13 April 2016
Nexteer steers new path in Poland
Intuitive motion control specialist Nexteer Automotive has opened its third manufacturing plant in Europe. Besides launching a new Technical Centre in Tychy, Poland in mid-2016, Nexteer is looking tohire 100 engineers.
Nexteer’s overall investment will exceed over US$16 million and the company plans to significantly enlarge this figure in coming years as the customer base expands.
The new plant will allow Nexteer to expand its manufacturing capabilities of electric power steering (EPS) systems for its current customers in Europe, including BMW, General Motors, FCA (Fiat Chrysler Automobiles) and PSA Peugeot Citroen.
In addition to the current investment in a new manufacturing facility, the company will also invest in high technology equipment and tools in the upcoming years; enhancing Nexteer’s premium EPS systems for European and global customers.
Electric steering systems require precision machining and assembly equipment to achieve high volumes.
Nexteer’s Poland Technical Centre will be responsible for the design and development of new steering system solutions and will house an integrated team with capabilities including design, modelling, software, prototyping, vehicle testing and validation.
The Technical Centre investment reflects campus improvements including an engineering garage, test track, laboratory, prototype centre and validation centre. These resources will enable the Nexteer team to develop, assess, evaluate, and improve steering system characteristics and vehicle steering performance.
Additional future investment is also part of Nexteer’s plan to keep its tech centre at the cutting-edge of technology.
To hire 100 engineers
In addition to investment in its facilities, Nexteer plans to hire over 100 engineers in the upcoming year. This looks like an interesting project for engineers with the right qualifications and experience.
The team will be located at the new tech centre and will engineer current and future EPS programmes. They will support the development of advanced driver assist systems (ADAS) and autonomous technologies for some of the largest, global automotive OEMs, such as BMW, FCA, Ford, GM and PSA Peugeot Citroen, which are about to embark on adopting this technology more widely.
The new tech centre’s team will not only work with industry professionals and customers within Europe, but also with those located around the world.
The team will closely collaborate with its colleagues at Nexteer’s corporate tech centre in Saginaw, Michigan (U.S.), as well as those located at other Nexteer facilities globally.
Nexteer has already started to recruit for these technical positions at the new facility. The company is searching for CAD / CAE designers, mechanical engineers, motors and sensors engineers, electronics embedded systems designers and software designers.
“Engineers working at our Technical Centre will have a unique opportunity to design and develop technology for some of the most advanced steering systems – impacting the safety and comfort of millions of drivers around the world. You can say that R&D specialists are – not only in the automotive business – among the best engineers who create innovative solutions to the toughest challenges. We are happy that it will be here, in Poland, where we will have the pleasure to develop experts shaping mobility of the future,” said Ryszard Iskra, technical director, Nexteer Automotive Poland.
Laurent Bresson, president and chief operating officer of Nexteer Automotive added: “Tychy, Poland is a perfect environment for our Technical Centre for many reasons, such as close proximity to one of our plants, the great pool of talent with experienced engineers and technical universities, plus the special economy zones and collaborative local authorities who share common sustainable growth goals with Nexteer.”
Currently Nexteer Automotive plants in Poland produce almost 3 million steering systems annually for OEMs’ models such as BMW i3 (BMW’s first fully electric vehicle), BMW 1 series, BMW 2 series Active Tourer, Mini Cooper, Alfa Romeo MiTo, Fiat 500, Opel/Vauxhall Adam, Corsa and Insignia, Citroen C3 and DS3. Since 2010 Nexteer has invested over US$80 million in facilities in Poland.