Besides the definitive entry in the extra heavy segment, the production of the VW Meteor represents another milestone in the history of Volkswagen Caminhões e Ônibus: the millionth vehicle produced by the automaker is a 29.520 model unit. Of this total, more than 850 thousand units were manufactured by VWCO's industrial complex in Resende, Rio de Janeiro, which is celebrating 25 years since its first facilities in the city and is home to the brand's worldwide development center, in addition to the company's most modern assembly lines, which received recent investments of over R$ 500 million.
"This production record is now the result of our constant efforts since the beginning of our operations in 1981, but especially from our facility in Resende, which began in 1995 with a laboratory plant. Over the past 25 years, we have invested continuously to ensure a state-of-the-art production process. There were R$ 5.5 billion destined to the company's growth, with the most recent investment cycle foreseen to finish in 2021 and that has great part of the resources focused on the launching of the new extra heavy VW", says Roberto Cortes, president and CEO of Volkswagen Caminhões e Ônibus.
For the new assembly of these recently launched vehicles, the company invested in modern manufacturing 4.0 in automation level, with advanced robotics and data connectivity, from the frame to the cabin finishing. The VW Caminhões e Ônibus plant now has more than 70 robots, one third of them dedicated to the Meteor line. The launches also have an exclusive area: a total of 18 thousand square meters, including from parts logistics to production. The new family will add to VWCO's extensive list of successes. The models with the highest volume produced up to today were the Worker, with about 434 thousand units since its first versions. The Constellation products, launched in 2006, already exceeded 253 thousand vehicles manufactured. Meanwhile, the Volksbus family of buses has a total of 160,000 chassis and the Delivery light trucks exceeded 142,000 vehicles in circulation. The MAN TGX also make their contribution to the milestone: about 11 thousand mechanical horses of the Bavarian brand have already passed through the Resende assembly line.
Excellence in products and production
The new family of heavyweight Volkswagen Caminhões e Ônibus debuts to revolutionize cargo transportation and expand the company's portfolio with the largest Volkswagen trucks of all times. The new giants are Meteor 29.520 6x4, Meteor 28.460 6x2 and also Constellation 33.460 6x4, all equipped with a 13-liter engine that provides high durability and fuel economy.
Produced with the highest quality standard of the entire Volkswagen Group, they are the most powerful trucks in the line that has beared the VW logo throughout its trajectory, entering the 460 and 520 horsepower range. The new giants now enable the manufacturer in new categories, with solutions to meet the complete range of trucks from 3.5 tons to 125 tons, the widest on the market.
The VW Meteor 29.520 already leaves the production line 100% connected. The model is equipped, as standard, with the RIO system - the TRATON Group's brand of digital logistics and telemetry solutions -, bringing to the customer all Volks|Care services, such as the specialized consultancy of Tailor Made Services Management (GSSM in Portuguese) and with countless digital facilities, always seeking to offer VWCO customers the best total cost of ownership (TCO) on the market.
Twenty-five years of Modular Consortium
Volkswagen Caminhões e Ônibus is celebrating, in 2020, 25 years since the announcement of the choice of Resende to receive its plant, which would house the innovative production process of the Modular Consortium. In this system, VWCO shares with seven suppliers the responsibility for assembling both trucks and bus chassis.
The partner company Maxion supplies chassis and wheels and is responsible for assembling the brake, electrical and fuel systems, independent front suspension and other assemblies and supports on the chassis, in addition to having recently incorporated Remon's activities with the assembly of wheels and tires. Meritor is responsible for the set of metal suspensions and axles. The novelty lies in this stage, which now includes Suspensys for the air suspensions.
Powertrain, a joint-venture formed by Cummins and MWM International, supplies engines and assembles transmission and clutch sets. Aethra supplies the prints and assembles the cabins, doing the whole process of welding and finishing in plate. Carese performs the surface preparation and painting works. And finally Kroschu installs its electronic components, internal and external coating of the cabin.
Volkswagen Caminhões e Ônibus focuses on the satisfaction of the final customer. Besides the development of products with its Engineering also located in Resende, the company takes care of quality tests that contemplate safety, compliance with brand and finishing standards. A network of dealers and importers spread over two continents does the worldwide distribution of its products.