CNX cited in AUTOMOBILPRODUKTION - Lean production and logistics in electric vehicle plants

Huge potentials for the OEMs arise due to the differences between electronic vehicles and vehicles with combustion engines. For example, electric vehicles, especially their drivetrains, consist of significantly fewer components.

The small number of individual parts reduces the work load of supplier and material management as well as physical logistics and thus facilitates leaner organisational structures in these areas.

Furthermore, fewer manual assembly steps decrease the demand for direct employees and the higher level of automatization diminishes the scope for human errors. The results are reduced scrap rates and lower costs for warranty and good will.

Nevertheless, producers of electronic vehicles are confronted with diverse challenges. The integration of shorter cycles in component development in ongoing vehicle projects necessitates a change management independent from hard production stoppages. A further problem is the production of high voltage batteries. For the handling and installing of high voltage batteries employers have to be specially qualified and the machinery has to be adapted as far as safety is concerned. Concerning logistics new warehouse and transportation processes have to be installed.

Intensive participation and qualification of all employees from shopfloor to management are decisive to still be able to fully exploit the economic potential. Our project experience has shown that the first step has to be the clear definition of goals. Then it is important to continually inform, communicate and qualify concerning the processes which will be adapted. Thus, employees and management have the necessary orientation, and standstill and inefficient operations can be avoided.

An extract of the above mentioned article was published in the special edition with the topic „Vision e“.of the journal  AUTOMOBIL PRODUKTION