“The construction of the new paint shop in Mladá Boleslav is an important investment in the future of our company,” said Michael Oeljeklaus, ŠKODA AUTO Board Member for Production and Logistics. “Demand for ŠKODA vehicles is increasing worldwide and we are working continuously on increasing production capacity in our existing plants. At the new paint shop, we are implementing numerous ecological innovations which will significantly minimise the environmental impacts of the painting process,” added Oeljeklaus.
Just a few days ago, ŠKODA AUTO announced it would be building purely battery-powered models at its main plant in Mladá Boleslav from 2020. Both the production of zero-emission electric vehicles and the additional paint shop capacity emphasise ŠKODA AUTO’s long-term growth and the consistent focus on environmentally friendly technologies.
With up to 650 employees, the new facility will operate in three shifts and will paint 600 bodies per day. Together with the existing facility, the painting capacity at the main plant in Mladá Boleslav will increase to 2,700 bodies per day.
The paint shop, which is expected to be up and running in June 2019, will be one of the most cutting-edge facilities in the whole of Europe. Numerous production steps will be undertaken or assisted by robots. The high level of automation means that the ŠKODA employees’ workstations can be given a particularly ergonomic design.
In a multi-stage painting process, the body is given a flawless coating. A total of five paint coats result in a layer of paint that is around 100 µm thick. The paint shop offers a wide colour spectrum with a total of 15 colours including metallic and pearlescent colours.
The environmental sustainability of the new paint shop also sets new standards: a new order process reduces the material requirements. Paint residue is adsorbed by chalk products – no paint sludge is accumulated as a waste product as a result of this dry separation. In addition, a large proportion of the heat produced during the process is recaptured. An air-return pipe allows for energy savings of up to 80 per cent.
By increasing the capacity and setting the course for the construction of electric vehicles in Mladá Boleslav, ŠKODA AUTO continues to consistently implement key components of its 2025 Strategy. With this roadmap for the future, the Czech manufacturer is preparing itself for the upcoming challenges in the automotive industry. Key topics include electromobility, the digitalisation of the company, internationalisation and new mobility services. ŠKODA AUTO aims to grow in two dimensions as a result: vehicle sales are expected to increase further and new business areas, such as digital mobility services, are to create a broader base for growth.
The Czech car manufacturer is combining its environmental activities under the umbrella of the ‘GreenFuture’ strategy. Investments such as the environmentally friendly paint shop fall under ‘GreenFactory’ and form an important pillar of the ŠKODA AUTO sustainability strategy. As one of the key objectives, the environmental impacts of global vehicle production are to be halved in comparison to 2010.