Volkswagen - Dresden
Case Study Volkswagen - Dresden

VW Halves Fit-and-Finish Inspection Times for its Premium Flagship Model

The Transparent Factory in Dresden, as this futuristic plant enclosed almost entirely in glass is called, was built especially to manufacture Volkswagen’s premium-segment vehicle, the Phaeton, and opened its doors on December 11th, 2001. Employing a workforce of some 400 people, the plant is located centrally in the city, fitting beautifully within its urban landscape.

Volkswagen was the first car manufacturer to implement a production concept that combines the automated processes of classic industrial automobile production with manual work processes. Another unique characteristic of the Transparent Factory is that customers who order a Volkswagen Phaeton can actually come and watch as their very own vehicle is being made. The two days required to put together every new Phaeton are alternatively split between touring different plant facilities and paying homage to Dresden’s rich cultural heritage. Taking delivery of your new Phaeton is a red-carpet event both inside and outside the Transparent Factory, and includes a visit to the world-famous Semper Opera.

The body shells manufactured at Volkswagen’s Mosel plant are shipped by truck to Dresden, where they are stored in a glass-clad storage facility prior to the final assembly. The image people looking in from outside the plant get is one reminiscent of a box full of oversized model cars. Yet even when they are in direct proximity of the plant, pedestrians and residents can make out practically no sound coming from within. This way, not only is the Transparent Factory in complete architectural congruence with its urban surroundings, it also introduces no sound pollution to the otherwise tranquil street block on which it is located. . . . .

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