The expansion of the Poznań plant has taken over two years and changes included the construction of a logistics hall, expansion of the body shop and reconfiguration of the factory site
Preparations for full production of the new Caddy at the Polish commercial vehicle plant are almost complete according to Dietmar Mnich, Chairman of the Board of Management of Volkswagen Poznań and plant director: “We have concluded around 90% of the capital investment for preparing the plant for production of the latest vehicle models, in particular the new Caddy. The first few vehicles for testing the production processes are currently running through the new facilities. We are planning to start full production in September and then to gradually ramp up the volume and ultimately reach full capacity in 2021.”
The first stage of the expansion process was the integration of two parts of the plant site, which had previously been separated by a minor public road, followed by the construction of a new logistics hall. It provides warehouse space of 46,000 sq.m to store engines, bumpers, side windows, door trim panels, bulkheads and fuel tanks for production of the Caddy and T6.1. Its location next to the production facility will also save up to 260 lorry trips per day.
The bodyshop has also been expand and now covers over 14,000 sq.m and has a storage capacity of 200,000 cubic meters. The level of automation in the bodyshop will increase from 43% to over 80% with investment in 450 new robots. The automation of the production processes brings with it organisational changes. “In tandem with the technical advances come requirements for our employees to learn new skills. Making the body of the new Caddy requires much less manual work. The demands in relation to controlling the plant and machinery meanwhile are going up nearly threefold. Over the last two years, we have therefore run over 1,800 training sessions for the plant in Poznań, the aim of which has been to retrain and upskill the team for their new tasks”, says Jolanta Musielak, Member of the Board of Management for Human Resources and Administration.