This announcement marks the first stage of Toyota's introduction of its advanced hybrid technology and Toyota New Global Architecture (TNGA) into Polish plants.
TMMP is the first Toyota plant outside of Asia and the second located outside of Japan to be entrusted with the production of Toyota's technologically advanced hybrid transaxles. Hybrid electric transaxles coordinate the synergy between electric motors and the combustion engine. It is a core element of Toyota's hybrid electric powertrain.
"We started Europe's journey towards electrification with our first hybrid in Europe in 2000. Today, almost one in two of our sales are hybrids and our hybrid sales continue to grow. Hybrid technology is our key differentiator. It is only one part of our ambitious electrification strategy to sell over 5.5 million electrified vehicles globally, including 1 million zero emission vehicles, per year, by 2030. The continued growth of hybrid in Europe allows for the expansion of local production of hybrid components," said Dr. Johan van Zyl, President and CEO of Toyota Motor Europe.
The new investment is an important contribution for the continued electrification of the Polish automotive industry. This and other recent investments will create approximately 600 new jobs and bring Toyota's cumulative Polish investment to more than €1 billion ($1,14 billion).
The first fully automated hot-forming process shapes and cuts parts of the car – which are integral to protecting drivers and passengers – using giant furnaces, robots and 3,000°C lasers.
"We are building on techniques used to strengthen steel for thousands of years, incorporating modern materials and automation to speed and refine the hot-forming process," said Dale Wishnousky, vice president, Manufacturing, Ford of Europe. "The resulting boron steel safety cell helps to make the all-new Focus one of our safest vehicles ever."
The hot-forming line, fully integrated within the company's Saarlouis Vehicle Assembly Plant in Germany, was built as part of a recent €600 million ($678 million) investment in the Saarlouis facility. Hot forming is an integral part of the production of the all-new Ford Focus that was awarded a maximum five-star Euro NCAP safety rating.
All-new Focus makes extensive use of boron steel, the strongest steel used in the auto industry, within the car's safety cell. This helps to create a survival space in the event of an accident. In addition, the use of boron, also found in skyscrapers, helps the new model to achieve a 40% improvement in the car's capability to withstand head‑on crashes.
Hot-formed steel pieces are subjected to temperatures of up to 930° C; unloaded by robots into a hydraulic press that has a closing force up to 1,150 tonnes; and then shaped and cooled in just three seconds. The boron steel is so strong by this point that a laser beam hotter than lava is used to precision-cut each piece into its final shape.
Tata Harrier needed a completely new approach to product development and manufacturing processes. The completely new world-class assembly line has been built in a record time of 6 months with the best manufacturing practices adopted from Jaguar Land Rover. It boasts of 90% automation levels with over 100+ KUKA and ABB robots.
According to Mr. Mayank Pareek, President, Passenger Vehicle Business Unit, Tata Motors, "We have been receiving a tremendous response from the customers ever since we opened bookings of the Harrier, a fortnight ago. With the all- new assembly line ready and the roll out of the 1st Harrier, we are now gearing up to start deliveries in early 2019. The Harrier, with its stunning design will definitely appeal to customers, especially those who have eagerly waited for the product since its showcase as the H5X concept at the Auto Expo 2018. We are confident that the Harrier will set new benchmarks in the SUV segment, in 2019."
Harrier is the first vehicle to sport the Impact Design 2.0 philosophy. It will offer an extraordinary exterior design, thoughtfully and intelligently designed plush interiors, future ready connectivity and best-in-class infotainment.
The 5 seater monocoque SUV is engineered on the new generation 'Optimal Modular Efficient Global Advanced' Architecture, which is derived from the legendary Land Rover D8 architecture and developed in collaboration with Jaguar Land Rover.
A mid-double-digit-million-euro amount will be channelled into structural measures and equipment to produce batteries for the all-electric MINI alone. Covering an area of around 6,000 square metres in the west wing of the Dingolfing component plant 02.20, equipment for manufacturing battery modules will be set up, along with a battery assembly line. The first systems are currently being installed and will be tested sequentially.
"With the launch of new models and growing demand for electrified vehicles, we will be stepping up production of electric components significantly over the next few months and years," said Roland Maurer, head of Planning and Production E-Powertrain at the BMW Group.
The fully electric Mini will be built in Oxford in the south of England, starting in late 2019. Batteries for the car will come from the new battery production facility in Dingolfing, with electric engines from the neighbouring BMW Group Plant in Landshut. As a result, the new innovation leader for the British premium small car-brand will have "English apparel and a Bavarian heart".
From 2020, the plant in Dingolfing will also produce fifth-generation electric drive systems for the BMW Group's future electrified vehicles, like the BMW iX3, the BMW i4 and the BMW iNEXT. The extensive remodelling and preparatory measures needed for this are already underway.
In recognition of its growing importance and key role within the production network, the component plant 02.20 will now be renamed the "BMW Group Competence Centre e-drive production".
Plant 02.20, one of the oldest sections of the Dingolfing plant cluster, has produced batteries and electric motors for BMW Group plug-in hybrid models since 2015. It was the headquarters of the BMW Group's global spare parts distribution for many decades. Parts distribution was gradually relocated to new warehouses in Wallersdorf and Bruckberg a few years ago, opening up space for the new "Competence Centre e-drive production". More than 300 people are currently employed there.
The three-cylinder, 1.5-litre EcoBoost engine, which debuts in the Fiesta ST and all-new Focus, is built on an all-new, state-of-the-art flexible manufacturing facility following of an investment of £100 million ($128 million), including support from the Welsh Government support.
"I'm personally very proud to see production start of this all-new engine, here in Bridgend, said Wallace Yearwood, Plant Manager. "It's the result of a significant investment in the plant, a plant which has a long-established history of delivering world-class engines, and we will make this engine another success."
Economy and Transport Secretary Ken Skates said: "I'm delighted to see our Welsh Government investment supporting hundreds of high skilled jobs in south Wales. We are proud to have played a part in developing this world class manufacturing facility and look forward to continuing to work with the company and workforce to ensure a bright future for the plant at Bridgend, despite the upcoming challenges of Brexit."
Quality confirmation of the new engine is assured through multi-stage testing and process monitoring at all points during assembly process. Machining lines for the cylinder head and cylinder block feature the latest CNC technology and environmentally efficient cutting systems.
The all-new engine family was designed and developed by engineers at the Ford Dunton Technical Centre in Essex, as well as Ford's Technical Centre in Merkenich Germany, and the Ford Research and Innovation Centre in Aachen, Germany.