Expansion Hungary: New Mercedes-Benz factory

| Author / Editor: Zsolt Meszaros, Editor in Chief, MM Muszaki Magazin / Susanne Hertenberger

Mercedes-Benz is building a new factory at its site in Kecskemét to ensure flexible production.

Mercedes-Benz is building a new factory in Kecskemét: aerial view of the Mercedes-Benz Factory in Kecskemét
Mercedes-Benz is building a new factory in Kecskemét: aerial view of the Mercedes-Benz Factory in Kecskemét
(Bild: Daimler AG; Mercedes-Benz Cars, http://gyar.mercedes-benz.hu)

Mercedes-Benz is building its second factory in Kecskemét that will be able to manufacture front- as well as rear wheel driven cars. “We are planning a 1 billion Euro investment at our Kecskemét site in the next few years. As a result of the investment, an efficient, high-tech production unit – so called ‘Flex Werk’ – will be built with the spirit of industry 4.0 in mind. Cars of different architecture and drive will roll down the production line, all made in a flexible production system. Our production capacity will increase with the new factory and we will be able to react to market needs swiftly and with the necessary flexibility. Our company will further increase its competitiveness.” – says Markus Schaefer, Mercedes-Benz Board Member responsible for production and supply chain. Mercedes-Benz’ product palette consists of 32 models presently and will be expanded to 40 models in the near future. Among the plans, there is the job of gradually adapting all Mercedes-Benz production lines for the manufacturing of alternative, electric driven models.

A more flexible and efficient work environment

The second Kecskemét factory will have body-, surface handling- and assembly workshops as well as an industrial park. In the light of the requirements of industry 4.0, such a factory will be built the production procedures of which can be adjusted easily. The new facility will consist of closely interconnected production units and widely digitalized chain of procedures, resulting in a new means of cooperation between man and machine with smart application of production data. This makes production even more flexible and efficient and work environment more ergonomic for employees. Preparations will start this year and production is expected to begin by the end of the decade. An estimated 2.500 new jobs will be created directly thanks to the investment and further ones at the suppliers’ side and in factories in Germany.

Gallery

Mercedes-Benz has been manufacturing front wheel driven compact cars for the global market since 2012. The 500.000th car rolled off the production line in February 2016. Mercedes-Benz announced at the end of April, 2016 that they are ready to spend more than 580 million Euros on technology development as well as the expansion of production capacity in their existing compact car factory. New generation Mercedes-Benz compact cars will be manufactured in the Kecskemét plant.

„The investment in the new flexible production unit is a clear acknowledgement of the skill and motivation of our colleagues in Kecskemét. Moreover, with the new investment, the Hungarian team can gain further knowledge in the manufacturing of rear wheel driven vehicles. The Kecskemét location had a great advantage in that, it had both government and municipal backing. The Kecskemét site has a bright future together with the existing and the new plant.” – said Rainer Ruess, head of production planning at Mercedes-Benz Cars.

Mercedes-Benz Manufacturing Hungary ltd.

Mercedes-Benz Manufacturing Hungary ltd. employs about 4.000 people. The Kecskemét factory produced more than 180.000 compact cars in 2015. The first product made in Hungary from 2012 was class B. The Kecskemét factory started manufacturing the four-door CLA coupé and CLA Shooting Brake in 2013 and January 2015, respectively. It is of special pride that the latter two types are manufactured exclusively here in Hungary for the entire world.

About Mercedes-Benz Cars Operations

Mercedes-Benz Cars Operations is responsible for the manufacturing of private vehicles in 27 locations globally, employing about 78.000 people within a flexible and efficient production network, including central functions such as design, logistics and quality control. Last year, Mercedes-Benz Cars manufactured more than two million vehicles under the brand name of Mercedes-Benz and Smart, reaching the fifth consecutive record. The production network focuses on the manufacturing of front wheel driven (compact cars), rear wheel driven (for example S-, E- and C class) as well as SUVs and sport cars. This is linked up with the production network of drive chains (engines, transmissions, shafts, parts). A Lead Factory is in the center of each production network, functioning as a competence center for technology and quality control in relation with the newly introducible models. Throughout the daily work, they focus on the continuous improvement and development of modern manufacturing procedures that make possible the efficient, flexible and environmental production of the high-tech vehicles of the future in Mercedes-Benz quality. The skill of the workers is the center of the life of the company. The factory supports the work of the employees by forming ergonomic workplaces and intelligent automating. Besides its own plants, Mercedes-Benz enhances the collaboration with contracted manufacturers and demands their capacities in the interest of growth.

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