Volvo Group and SSAB signed a collaboration agreement on research, development, serial production and commercialization of the world's first vehicles to be made of fossil-free steel. Volvo will start manufacturing the first concept vehicles and machines with steel from SSAB using hydrogen in 2021. Plans call for smaller-scale serial production to start during 2022 and for a gradual escalation toward mass production to follow. Volvo and SSAB will also work together in research and development to optimize the use of steel in Volvo’s products with regard to weight and quality. The two companies plan to develop a number of products of fossil-free steel with the goal of reaching serial production within a few years.
Ford committed that 100% of its passenger-vehicle range in Europe will be zero-emissions capable, all-electric or plug-in hybrid by mid-2026 and will be completely all-electric by 2030. Similarly, Ford’s entire commercial-vehicle range in Europe will be zero-emissions capable, all-electric or plug-in hybrid by 2024, with two-thirds of its commercial-vehicle sales expected to be all-electric or plug-in hybrid by 2030. Spearheading Ford’s advance into an all-electric future is a new $1 billion investment to modernize its vehicle assembly facility in Cologne, Germany, the home of Ford of Europe. The investment will transform the existing vehicle assembly operations into the Ford Cologne Electrification Center for the manufacture of electric vehicles, the company’s first such facility in Europe.
General Motors announced a $100 million investment in two of its manufacturing facilities: $93 million at the Romulus, Mich., propulsion plant and $7 million at the Bedford, Ind., casting operations. The Romulus investment will add machining capability, while the Bedford investment will increase the plant’s die-casting capabilities. Both investments will support increased production of GM’s 10-speed automatic transmissions used in the Chevrolet Silverado and GMC Sierra light-duty, full-size pickups. Work will begin immediately at both locations.
Industrial Heating in cooperation with SECO/WARWICK
January 12, 2021
Editor’s note: The following is an edited (for length) transcription of an interview between SECO/WARWICK’s Tom Hart and Dan Herring, The Heat Treat Doctor. It was part of the company’s E-Seminar held in September 2020.
General Motors announced the opening of its 15,000-square-foot Additive Industrialization Center (AIC), a facility exclusively dedicated to productionizing 3D-printing technology in the automotive industry. The AIC is the capstone of GM’s increased investment in 3D printing over the last several years. The facility in Warren, Mich., includes 24 3D printers that create polymer and metal solutions. GM’s additive design and manufacturing team leverages a number of processes at the AIC, including selective laser sintering, selective laser melting, multi-jet fusion and fused deposition modeling.
General Motors plans to invest $71 million into two Ohio manufacturing facilities, including $39 million at its Toledo transmission plant and $32 million at its Defiance casting plant. Work will begin immediately at the two locations. The Toledo investment will be used to upgrade and enhance the production of GM’s eight-speed rear-wheel-drive transmission, and the Defiance investment will be used to prepare the facility for future engine casting components work. The investments will enable the company to retain 240 jobs.
General Motors will invest $2.2 billion at its Detroit-Hamtramck assembly plant to produce a variety of all-electric trucks and SUVs. When the plant is fully operational, this investment will create more than 2,200 manufacturing jobs. GM will also invest an additional $800 million in supplier tooling and other projects related to the launch of the new electric trucks. The company’s first all-electric truck will be a pickup with production scheduled to begin in late 2021. Detroit-Hamtramck will be GM’s first fully dedicated electric-vehicle assembly plant. The plant’s paint and body shops and general assembly area will receive comprehensive upgrades, including new machines, conveyors, controls and tooling.
Ford Motor Co. is investing more than $1.45 billion in two southeast Michigan manufacturing facilities and adding 3,000 new jobs. The company will invest approximately $750 million and add 2,700 new direct jobs at its manufacturing facility in Wayne, Mich., during the next three years. Ford will install new equipment to support production of the all-new Ford Bronco and Ford Ranger and create a new modification center at the Wayne location. Ford will add 300 jobs and invest about $700 million at its Dearborn manufacturing site to support production of new electrified variants of its F-150 truck, producing both an F-150 hybrid and fully electric F-150. The company will also create a new operation in Dearborn where battery cells will be assembled into a battery pack for the F-150 hybrid and all-electric F-150.
Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) and Peugeot S.A. (Groupe PSA) signed a binding Combination Agreement providing for a 50/50 merger of their businesses to create the fourth-largest global automotive OEM by volume and third largest by revenue. The combined company will have annual unit sales of 8.7 million vehicles.