ŠKODA ENYAQ iV and OCTAVIA on the same line

ŠKODA ENYAQ <span>i</span>V and OCTAVIA on the same line

The all-electric ŠKODA ENYAQ iV SUV rolls off the same production line as the OCTAVIA and KAROQ models. Mladá Boleslav is the only place in the entire Volkswagen Group where cars built on two different platforms are made together. Take a closer look at this unique solution.

10. 12. 2020 Škoda World Innovation & technology

While other Volkswagen Group electric cars built on the MEB platform are made in dedicated factories, ŠKODA decided to go down the “parallel production” road with its first electric car on the MEB platform. The goal was to achieve maximum production flexibility and make the most efficient use possible of the production lines.

ŠKODA ENYAQ, výrobaŠKODA AUTO launches series production of the ENYAQ iV model at the main plant in Mladá Boleslav 

“One reason why the production of ENYAQ iV cars was integrated into the OCTAVIA production lines was that capacity for other models was freed up here,” says Aleš Bureš, head of Car Production Planning.

Bures_Ales_MGL5594Aleš Bureš
Head of Car Production Planning

Flexible reactions

The Mladá Boleslav employees are used to flexibility on the OCTAVIA production line. Part of the KAROQ model output is also produced here, and the RAPID model also used to be made here. Unlike the OCTAVIA, the RAPID was based on its own platform, not the Volkswagen Group’s MQB platform. “Even so, the integration was a challenge for ŠKODA. Combining MEB and MQB car production in the optimal way required a lot of painstaking work, mainly by our planning units but also right across the company,” Bureš describes.

At its headquarters in Mladá Boleslav, ŠKODA has invested 32 million euros in the conversion work required to enable both MEB and MQB models to be produced on the same line

The ENYAQ iV is the first mass-produced ŠKODA model that was designed as a purely battery-powered car right from the start. That puts different demands on production processes and the sequence of production operations than combustion engine models,” says Michael Oeljeklaus, member of the ŠKODA board of directors responsible for production and logistics.

michael_oeljeklaus_02Michael Oeljeklaus
Member of the ŠKODA board of directors responsible for production and logistics

In his opinion, the chosen solution makes it possible to react flexibly to demand for cars. “It gives us the ability to make between 250 and 350 ENYAQ iV cars a day in our main factory. That means we are ready to react immediately to market demand, while ensuring that the production lines are in full use under all circumstances,” Oeljeklaus adds.

This work included structural changes to the building as well as modifications to the conveyor technology and final assembly line

Batteries and head-up displays

Even though flexibility on the OCTAVIA production line is nothing new, parallel MQB and MEB production required special modifications. In total, EUR 32 million was invested in these modifications, which took place from last summer. Despite this year’s complications caused by the Covid-19 pandemic, the production line was reorganised according to schedule.

“The biggest changes we made were in assembly, where the difference between combustion engine and electric car production is most noticeable.  Here we had to cope with specific new MEB components linked to electric cars and with the overall greater weight of e-cars,” says Aleš Bureš. In line with the weight requirements, cycles were added on the assembly line and adjustments were made to chassis assembly. As well as this, a new work station for battery installation was created.

In future, the brand will be manufacturing up to 350 units of the ENYAQ iV here every day in a fully flexible manner alongside the OCTAVIA and KAROQ series

For example, there are new technologies for handling heavy batteries, and the new work station for modifying head-up displays is another interesting addition. That’s because the ENYAQ iV is the first ŠKODA model with a new type of head-up display with a much larger projection surface and augmented reality features - this solution is therefore a lot more demanding in terms of production than the traditional head-up display.

Minor adjustments were also made to the load-bearing structure of the production shed itself. “We made small adjustments to some girders, but we had to perform a complete check of the building’s structural capacity reserves,” explains Aleš Bureš. During the alterations, the Czech carmaker paid great attention to safety, especially with regard to battery handling. ŠKODA also introduced extensive fire protection measures, including installing thermovision cameras that constantly monitor the temperature in the production shed and activate an alarm if the temperature ever deviates from a specified range.