Volvo Cars today announces it will replace its current paint shop at its Torslanda car manufacturing plant with a new one, which will result in an expected reduction of paint shop energy consumption and emissions by at least one third.
This is in line with the company’s ambition to have climate-neutral global manufacturing operations by 2025, and follows the 2018 solar panel installation at the company’s Ghent factory and, also in 2018, its Skövde engine plant in Sweden becoming the first climate-neutral facility in its global manufacturing network.
The new paint shop represents a multi-billion kronor investment in the Torslanda plant and is one part of a broader investment plan for the plant. Construction will begin in 2020.
The installation of the new paint shop also illustrates Volvo Cars’ commitment to Sweden as a manufacturing base and its ambitious growth plans.
The Torslanda plant is Volvo Cars’ largest manufacturing facility in terms of volume, and built 291,000 cars in 2018. It employs around 6,500 manufacturing staff and produces cars on the company’s in-house-developed scalable product architecture (SPA) platform, which underpins the company’s 90 and 60 series cars.
The introduction of a new paint shop allows for more efficient manufacturing processes and supports the launch of the next generation of Volvo models, most of which will be based on an upgraded version of the SPA architecture, called SPA2.
“We have identified our paint shop operation as one area in which we can achieve significant reductions in energy consumption and emissions,” said Javier Varela, Senior Vice President Manufacturing and Logistics at Volvo Cars. “Volvo Cars is committed to our vision for a more environmentally sustainable business. This investment also strengthens our plans for the Torslanda plant to remain globally competitive.”
In addition to addressing energy consumption and emissions throughout its global manufacturing network, Volvo Cars is also working to make greater use of sustainable material in its products. By 2025, it wants at least 25 per cent of the plastics used in every newly launched Volvo car to be made from recycled material.
The company is also committed to using less plastic in its operations, already undertaking a process to remove single-use plastics from all its offices, canteens and events across the globe by the end of 2019. The programme has so far replaced more than 20 million single-use plastic items such as cups, food containers and cutlery with more sustainable alternatives, including biodegradable products made of paper, pulp and wood.
The centrepiece of Volvo Cars’ commitment to reducing the environmental impact of both its products and operations was announced in 2017, when the company made its industry-leading commitment to electrify all new Volvo cars launched after 2019. Volvo Cars has since reinforced this strategy, by stating that it aims for fully electric cars to make up 50 per cent of its global sales by 2025.
Volvo Car Group in 2018
For the 2018 financial year, Volvo Car Group recorded an operating profit of 14,185 MSEK (14,061 MSEK in 2017). Revenue over the period amounted to 252,653 MSEK (208,646 MSEK). For the full year 2018, global sales reached a record 642,253 (571,577) cars, an increase of 12.4 per cent versus 2017. The results underline the comprehensive transformation of Volvo Cars’ finances and operations in recent years, positioning the company for its next growth phase.
About Volvo Car Group
Volvo has been in operation since 1927. Today, Volvo Cars is one of the most well-known and respected car brands in the world, with sales of 642,253 cars in 2018 in about 100 countries. Volvo Cars has been under the ownership of the Zhejiang Geely Holding (Geely Holding) of China since 2010. It formed part of the Swedish Volvo Group until 1999, when the company was bought by Ford Motor Company of the US. In 2010, Volvo Cars was acquired by Geely Holding.
In 2018, Volvo Cars employed on average approximately 43,000 (39,500) full-time employees. Volvo Cars’ head office, product development, marketing and administration functions are mainly located in Gothenburg, Sweden. Volvo Cars’ head office for China is located in Shanghai. The company’s main car production plants are located in Gothenburg (Sweden), Ghent (Belgium), South Carolina (US), Chengdu and Daqing (China), while engines are manufactured in Skövde (Sweden) and Zhangjiakou (China), and body components in Olofström (Sweden).