Automotive Purchasing Weekly 20 July 2015 - page 9

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Audi celebratescompletion
of newpaint shop
16 July 2015 | OEM
A new paint shop has been built in the north
of Audi’s plant site in Ingolstadt, just over
a year after the start of construction; Audi
employees will paint the first series car
bodies for the new Audi A4 in June 2016.
“With ultramodern equipment and
manufacturing technologies, we are ensuring
our Vorsprung durch Technik in production
and thus safeguarding our highest product
quality. The new topcoat paint line stands
for the continuous growth of our company
and the outstanding importance of the Audi
plant in Ingolstadt,” stated Prof. Dr. Hubert
Waltl, Board of Management Member for
Production at Audi.
The new topcoat paint line introduces a
new painting technology: In the future, the
painting process will be carried out fully
automatically by ultramodern equipment
using robot technology. The robots can
follow the contours of car bodies even
better, allowing them to achieve an even
more uniform covering of paint. The new
topcoat paint line at Audi in Ingolstadt will
also be one of the most environmentally
friendly paint shops in the world. For
example, a dry scrubbing process will
separate paint particles from the waste air
with the help of rock flour. The plant will
operate with air circulation so that 80% of
the cleaned waste air will be returned into
the system, thus reducing the consumption
of heat energy and water. At the same time,
the waste air will be cleaned of virtually all
solvent emissions.
Since the start of construction in May
2014, up to 300 workers have been busy
on the site each day. For the structural
work alone, they have used 20,000 cubic
meters of concrete and 4,300 tons of steel.
The building consists of a steel‑composite
structure and concrete‑filled steel supports.
This allows the hall, which is 324 meters
long and just 36 meters wide, to provide
more space for the painting equipment. In
the coming months, that equipment will be
installed and tested, and the interior and
exterior of the building will be completed.
As of 2016, on a total floor space of
approximately 12,000 square meters, about
200 employees and 100 robots will paint the
new Audi A4, thus covering up to a third of the
total capacity of 2,500 car bodies each day.
In addition, Audi is gradually modernising its
existing topcoat paint lines.
Porsche isgetting fit for the future
16 July 2015 | OEM
The Executive Board and the General Works
Council of Porsche has adopted a package
of measures for the safeguarding of the
company locations. Porsche is to invest
more than a billion euros in the expansion
of its factories.
The objective of Porsche’s agreement
with the title “Fit for the Future” is also
to boost the productivity, flexibility and
efficiency of the company while maintaining
the social standards for the employees.
In the agreement, representatives of both
employers and employees have ruled out
redundancies until 2020.
“Like all car makers, Porsche faces
major challenges – a volatile economic
situation, strict CO2 requirements, new drive
technologies and the progression of digital
technology”, said Matthias Müller, Chairman
of the Executive Board of Porsche. “This all
entails capacities being bound and requires
large-scale investments. That is why we are
checking and optimising all processes and
procedures within the company and set the
right course in good time.”
More than €1.1 billion to be invested in
Porsche plants
A new engine plant as well as a new body
shop is being introduced into Zuffenhausen,
in addition to an expansion of its assembly
line. As of August 2016, the current and
future generations of the Cayman models
will also be built in Zuffenhausen. In total,
more than €1.1 billion will be invested in the
Zuffenhausen, Ludwigsburg and Weissach
locations. Simultaneously, the high level of
social standards at Porsche will continue to
be secure.
“The entire package makes sense. We
have negotiated something great. We have
pushed through many of our interests.
Investments ensure that our locations and
thus the jobs will be safe for the coming
years”, said Uwe Hück, Chairman of the
General Works Council of Porsche AG.
“Fit for the future is great! But we still
have to take a few more steps. For our
future, we still need enormous growth at
the locations and in the region. That is only
possible with another model series, which
has to be developed in Weissach and built
in Zuffenhausen. Because the future has
a tradition with us. That ought to be the
caption over the title of our agreement, too.
Should the Supervisory Board adopt such a
project, we will also have to herald a new era
in our thinking. Then we’ll turn the idea into
a big success. That is why we are already
working on a paper that describes this new
era. We will be presenting it to the Executive
Board in the fall.”
Signed agreement
The further development of the working
time models makes an important contribution
to meet the modified flexibility needs of
employees and supervisors alike.
As part of a new part-time work scheme
for retirees – taking the demographic
changes and concomitant shortage of
skilled labour into account – it will facilitate
an earlier date for retirement for especially
burdened employees.
Apprenticeship
training
traditionally
enjoys a high priority at Porsche. A cutting-
edge training centre will open in the fall
of this year in Zuffenhausen. Porsche is
training 150 young people a year here.
These high figures for apprenticeships have
been confirmed once more. “Well-trained
employees are a guarantee for the future
viability and competitiveness of Porsche”,
according to Thomas Edig, Deputy Chairman
and Member of the Executive Board – Human
Resources. Therefore, the new agreement
proposes that all apprentices who pass their
final examination up to and including July
31, 2020, will get a permanent employment
contract.
The agreement will enter into force on
August 1. The Executive Board and General
Works Council are in agreement that the
previous agreements for securing the
economic future of the locations contributed
on a long-term basis to the business success
of Porsche. Now, with the new agreement
concluded, the Executive Board and the
General Works Council will continue this
success model.
The conclusion of the current agreement
does not mark the end of the negotiations
between the Executive Board and
Works Council, though. To increase the
attractiveness of the locations even more
for additional projects, the continuation
of the talks has been agreed upon for the
fall. Head of the Works Council, Hück has
announced in this context forward-looking
proposals so as to ensure that future
projects will be assigned to the traditional
site of Zuffenhausen and the development
centre at Weissach.
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