Wow, a 5 month old line puming out 77 cars/hour. With an annual wage of ~7000 Euros, that's like a labor cost of just 70 Euros/car. Cheaper than building the car in China.Since the first cee’d five-door rolled off the Zilina assembly line in December 2006, manufacturing at Kia’s all-new facility in Slovakia has been setting a series of production records, with more than 24,000 cars made so far this year.
Kia’s original goal was to ramp-up production conservatively, starting with one shift of workers and 5,000 cars a month during the first quarter of 2007 and going on to introduce a second shift to produce a total of 10,000 cars a month from May.
However, the first shift has been operating so efficiently – building up to 617 cee’d a day – that the second shift has been introduced 45 days ahead of schedule. As the second Zilina shift gathers pace towards a 60 cars per hour target, Kia is now planning to manufacture 12,000 cars in March and April, moving up to 14,000 in May.
‘Production at Zilina is progressing really well and vehicle quality is being maintained at the very highest standards,’ commented Jean-Charles Lievens, Senior Vice President Kia Motors Europe. ‘The introduction of the cee’d is bringing about a qualitative revolution for the Kia brand that will change how we are perceived by consumers across Europe.’
Representing an investment by Kia of €1 billion, the facility at Zilina is establishing new benchmarks for vehicle quality and productivity – aiming to manufacture 100 cars per employee per year when fully operational. And it will set new standards for environmental protection. The establishment of this plant is creating 20,000 jobs in the region and Zilina will have an ultimate capacity of 300,000 units annually.
Thanks to some of the world’s most advanced manufacturing techniques, the Zilina plant is ensuring that cee’d is a durable high-quality product and Kia is demonstrating its confidence by giving every cee’d a revolutionary seven-year and 100,000-mile warranty.
The Kia warranty is the best new vehicle warranty ever offered by any car manufacturer in Europe, with five-years’ cover of the entire car and an additional two-years’ cover on the powertrain. It is the clearest corporate statement of Kia’s confidence in the quality, durability and reliability of Kia products made in Europe.
By the end of the year there will be three cee’d body styles to choose from. Production of the cee’d Sports Wagon will begin in August with the cee’d three-door hatch in December 2007.