VW to launch new R235 million plant in South Africa


Volkswagen Group South Africa (VWSA) has launched its new R235 million wash-flood facility at its factory in Kariega, Uitenhage.

The group said the project will improve the efficiency and environmental impact of the wax flooding process for locally built Volkswagen Polos and Polo Vivos.

The process of wax flooding occurs after a vehicle’s bodywork has been painted, as certain cavities in the bodywork are not accessible during the painting process.

“The wax-flooding process, which serves to protect Volkswagen vehicles from corrosion in the cavities of the vehicle body, is now being carried out in a 5,350 m² building spread over four levels, in the factory’s former electrocoating facility,” it said.

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The international suppliers working on the project first visited the Kariega plant in July 2021, when production of components for the facility had already started, VW said.

Now the facility operates in three shifts and the plant’s daily production volume of 680 vehicles. It is capable of a full installed capacity of 710 vehicles per day and can even pass this to 747 vehicles per day, VW said.

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VW said the facility is also designed to be more energy efficient, noting that it uses 25% less energy for heating and has reduced CO2 emissions for the process by 55%.

“This investment by the Volkswagen Group is a great sign of confidence in VWSA as a production plant,” said Ulrich Schwabe, VWSA production director.

“The modern facility allows us to continue to build and supply high-quality Polos and Polo Vivos for local and export customers, while prioritizing our commitment to continually find more environmentally friendly ways to do this.”

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