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VW opens new plant in China

Volkswagen has opened a new car plant in China, which will build the Polo for the local market.

VW has a long history of producing cars for the People's Republic, with the Santana saloon a ubiquitous sight on Chinese streets. The factory has been developed in conjunction with local firm SAIC, and is designed for an annual production capacity of 300,000 vehicles.

Dr. Jochem Heizmann, the VW Board Member overseeing the Group's Chinese expansion, said: 'With a construction period of two years, we are even opening our new facility in Yizheng earlier than planned. This is one of the most environmentally compatible plants of the Volkswagen Group. With advanced technologies and new production processes, we intend to continue to play an instrumental role in the future of China as an automobile country.'

Together with Hu Maoyuan, the Chairman of SAIC, and representatives of the government of Jiangsu Province, Heizmann started production of the Volkswagen Polo last week. It is also planned to produce ?KODA models here in the next stage.

The Yizheng plant is located about 200 miles to the North-West of Shanghai, and will create about 3,700 new jobs in the region. It consists of press, body and paint shops as well as a final assembly unit. In addition, a technical testing centre, a training academy to provide initial and advanced training for employees and an energy centre were constructed on the site, which has a total area of about 1.3 million square metres.

Yizheng features geothermal energy for the heating and cooling of the factory halls, while for recharging transfer trucks at the plant and as well as employees' e-bikes, solar panels are used throughout the plant.

The People's Republic of China is the Volkswagen Group's largest sales market. In 2011, Volkswagen delivered 2.26 million vehicles to customers in China. In the first half of 2012, deliveries rose by 17.5 per cent to about 1.30 million units. With new products in line with market requirements, the objective of Volkswagen Group China is to increase annual production capacity to about four million units by 2018.

Posted on 31.07.2012
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