Paintshop, Skoda Mlada BoleslavCzech Republic – The facility at Mladá Boleslav is being developed at a cost of €214.5m ($253.8m) and will have capacity for 600 vehicle bodies per day, bringing the onsite total to 2,700 units including the existing paintshop. Operations are due to begin by mid-2019.

In its announcement, Skoda said the new paintshop would be “one of the most cutting-edge facilities in the whole of Europe”, with “numerous” processes conducted or assisted by robots. Meanwhile, workstations for the 650 human operatives, staffing three shifts, will also be ergonomically designed. Each body will receive five coats, resulting in a layer around 100μm thick, with 15 topcoat options including metallic and pearlescent finishes.

“Demand for Skoda vehicles is increasing worldwide and we are working continuously on increasing production capacity in our existing plants,” said Michael Oeljeklaus, the OEM’s board member for Production and Logistics. He added: “At the new paintshop, we are implementing numerous ecological innovations which will significantly minimise the environmental impacts of the painting process.”

The ecological measures include a new order process which will reduce material requirements, plus dry separation using chalk products so that no paint sludge will accumulate. Furthermore, most of the heat generated during the paint process will be recaptured, with an air-return pipe allowing energy savings of up to 80%.