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Production Sites

Welcome to the center of new mobility

Things have been busy at the Transparent Factory in Dresden over the past few months: since April, the e-Golf has been rolling off the line. inside visited the site, which until March 2016 was where the Phaeton was built.

Stefan Ochocki is one of around 250 employees at the Transparent Factory.

He’s been at the factory from the very start: Stefan Ochocki was involved in the launch of the Phaeton in the Transparent Factory back in 2001. “With that car, we were at the top compared to what was on the market then,” he says bluntly. Perhaps a bit nostalgic that the Phaeton is no longer being produced? The 43-year-old stands in front of a glass wall that separates the visitors’ area from assembly. He looks out over the moving line, which now produces 35 e-Golfs a day. He smiles: “Now we’re once again at the forefront of a brand new trend and leading the pack when it comes to electric mobility.” Ochocki sees the e-Golf as one of the first steps on this path to the future.

As the electrical specialist in charge, this Dresden native can anticipate any question concerning high-voltage technology. His motto: Have the facts ready to alleviate any possible concerns. “The fact is, when you’re working with high-voltage batteries, nothing can actually happen during day-to-day assembly work,” he says, touching the orange power cable. “There’s no voltage in here until the assembly process is complete,” he explains. “What’s more, all the contacts directly on the battery and the connections are protected against direct contact.”

More power and range

300 km

is the e-Golf’s current range according to NEDC – enough for most commuters.

10 euros

is what it costs to charge the battery with the Charge & Fuel card at any of more than 4,000 charging stations in Germany.

Regardless of whether they work directly on the production line or in an office: each of the 250 employees currently working in the Transparent Factory has to complete at least one two-hour training session on high-voltage technology with Stefan Ochocki. During these sessions, he not only explains how to handle and store a battery, but also discusses general issues regarding electric mobility such as range and road performance.

The biggest challenge facing the factory’s realignment over the past year was the “super tight schedule” for converting the factory, Ochocki sayst. Special conveyor technology was adapted to be in line with the Group’s standards, so that other models can be assembled there in future if necessary. The workflows now also more closely meet the specifications in the “Assembly White Book,” which defines Group-wide standards. Another specification requires 18 additional screw points for the high-voltage battery to ensure that it stays safely connected to the chassis over the vehicle’s service life.

9.6 seconds

is all it takes for the e-Golf to accelerate from 0 to 100 km/h with its 100 kW/136 hp engine.

45 minutes

at a 50 KW-DC charging station and the batteries are back to 80 percent.

Putting the future in the spotlight

“The Transparent Factory is slowly but surely transforming into a center for the future of mobility,” says factory manager Lars Dittert (above, center). Dresden itself is keen to become a model city for electric mobility, digitalization, and innovative fleet management. In light of this, the factory and city administration got together at the end of last of year to work on new concepts for electric mobility and new mobility.

Getting to know the e-Golf

After test driving the e-Golf, Frank Kurpat is convinced. “The vehicle is quick to accelerate, stress-free, and quiet. It would definitely be an ideal vehicle to lease.” Kurpat is one of 14 potential customers given the chance daily to test drive the e-Golf in Dresden for an hour, free of charge. It’s an offer with an impact extending beyond the region. Some 30 percent of test drivers are visitors from other cities or abroad.

Hatching new corporate ideas

“The Transparent Factory with its incubator program gives us access to a valuable network with Volkswagen and other start-ups. Working together, we can develop new ideas, which areinitially guided by our passion for innovation,” says Martin Wesner. He and his three colleagues from the start-up have moved into offices at the factory for a period of 200 days. The company uses Volkswagen Transporters to combine car-sharing for businesses with car-sharing for private use. To kick off the program, six start-ups have been given free office space and €15,000 in start-up financing.

Picking up a new electric vehicle

Ten customer advisors at the Transparent Factory look after customers purchasing electric vehicles. Regardless of whether they opt for an e-up!, an e-Golf, a Golf GTE or a Passat GTE – every model with an electric drive can be picked up in Dresden. A visit to the Transparent Factory is included.