http://www.engineeringnews.co.za
  SEARCH
Login
R/€ = 14.20Change: 0.17
R/$ = 11.58Change: 0.07
Au 1198.59 $/ozChange: 4.13
Pt 1200.50 $/ozChange: 3.00
 
 
Note: Search is limited to the most recent 250 articles. Set date range to access earlier articles.
Where? With... When?








Start
 
End
 
 
And must exclude these words...
Close Main Search
Close Main Login
My Profile News Alerts Newsletters Logout Close Main Profile
 
Agriculture   Automotive   Chemicals   Competition Policy   Construction   Defence   Economy   Electricity   Energy   Environment   ICT   Metals   Mining   Science and Technology   Services   Trade   Transport & Logistics   Water  
What's On Press Office Tenders Suppliers Directory Research Jobs Announcements Contact Us
 
 
 
RSS Feed
Article   Comments   Other News   Research   Magazine  
 
 
Nov 26, 2010

German components firm opens R178m Uitenhage facility

Back
Construction|Africa|Benteler|Benteler Automotive|Components|Volkswagen Group South Africa|VW Group SA|Africa|Asia|Europe|China|India|South Africa|Uitenhage Plant|Automotive|Blank Steel Parts|Building|Dashboard Carrier Panels|Equipment|Local Vehicle Manufacturers|Logistics|Manufacturing|Parts Producer|Product|Steel|David Powels|Hein Van Gerwen
Construction|Africa|Components||Africa||||Automotive|Building|Equipment|Logistics|Manufacturing|Steel|
construction|africa-company|benteler|benteler-automotive|components|volkswagen-group-south-africa|vw-group-sa|africa|asia|europe|china|india|south-africa|uitenhage-plant|automotive|blank-steel-parts|building|dashboard-carrier-panels|equipment|local-vehicle-manufacturers|logistics|manufacturing|parts-producer|product|steel|david-powels|hein-van-gerwen
© Reuse this



German parts producer Benteler has cut the ribbon on its R178-million new plant in the Nelson Mandela Bay Logistics Park, in Uitenhage.

The operation, churning out dashboard carrier panels, body parts, front and rear bumpers, and chassis parts, will employ 250 people once it reaches full production next year.

The plant supplies the Volkswagen Group South Africa (VW Group SA), which produces the new Polo for the local and export markets, and the Polo Vivo for the local market.

With around 40% space still available for future expansion, Benteler boss Hubertus Benteler says that the 130-year-old company, a fourth-generation family-owned business, will also seek to secure work from other local vehicle manufacturers, a process which will take shape over the next 2,5 to 3 years.

He adds that the new plant is number 68 for the group, with number 69 and 70 already under construction in India and China.

The Uitenhage plant saw the introduction of a country-first hot-forming line, where blank steel parts, such as the A-pillar on a car, are shaped while heated to 900 ˚C.

Benteler Automotive CEO Hein van Gerwen says that body parts are traditionally welded together, which adds weight to the vehicle.

“So, Benteler invented hot-forming. If you shape a blank while it is still hot, there is no springback.” (‘Springback’ refers to the tendency of material to partially return to its original shape when cold-worked, because of the elastic recovery of the material.)

In the end, this means that these parts are stronger, lighter and dimensionally more accurate.

Benteler says that the South African factory is unique in that the decision to invest was made in April 2009, when the recession had well and truly bared its teeth and Benteler had lost 30% of the sales it had forecast for the year.

However, he emphasises that the company believed in its South African investment on the back of strong government support for the automotive industry, a vibrant Volkswagen brand, and a strong localisation programme.

He notes, for example, that importing parts from Asia to South Africa, building a car here, and then exporting that car to Europe mean a part can spend six months on the ocean.

“Benteler is key to VW Group SA’s business strategy to increase the local content on the new Polo and the Polo Vivo to in excess of 70%,” adds VW Group SA MD David Powels.

Benteler, together with other parts manufacturers – Faurecia, Grupo Antolin, Rehau and Flex Tech – has invested more than R700-million and created more than 600 jobs in the logistics park in the past 12 months, he says.

“Importantly, this investment enables VW Group SA to manufacture in excess of 120 000 vehicles a year for both the export and domestic markets. It is exactly this level of investment that helps provide an original- equipment manufacturer (or car manufacturer), with a hedge against the threat of imports to the South African automotive manufacturing industry,” says Powels.

“Four years ago, VW Group SA commenced a R5-billion investment programme in new plant, new technologies, new product and the required people skills development. One of the fundamental pillars of this ambitious investment programme was to take local content levels from below 40% to in excess of 70%. Together with Benteler and our other suppliers, we have achieved this.”

Edited by: Martin Zhuwakinyu
© Reuse this Comment Guidelines (150 word limit)
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Other Automotive News
 
Latest News
Updated 2 hours 37 minutes ago Goldman Sachs Group has sold its controversial metals warehousing business to Swiss private equity group Reuben Brothers, the Wall Street bank said on Monday. The deal for Metro International Trade Services comes months after Goldman formally put the business on the...
Updated 2 hours 45 minutes ago Greenhouse gas emissions by the world's top 500 companies rose 3.1% from 2010 to 2013, far off the cuts urged by the United Nations to limit global warming, a study showed on Monday. The top 500 firms by capitalisation accounted for 13.8% of world greenhouse gas...
Updated 7 hours ago The cost of copper theft decreased to R13-million in November from R13.2-million in October, according to the SA Chamber of Commerce and Industry's (Sacci) Copper Theft Barometer. "The November figure is 1.51% lower than a month ago and 36.8% higher than a year...
More
 
 
Recent Research Reports
Liquid Fuels 2014 - A review of South Africa's Liquid Fuels sector (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s Liquid Fuels 2014 Report examines these issues, focusing on the business environment, oil and gas exploration, the country’s feedstock supplies, the development of South Africa’s biofuels industry, fuel pricing, competition in the sector, the...
Water 2014: A review of South Africa's water sector (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s Water 2014 report considers the aforementioned issues, not only in the South African context, but also in the African and global context, and examines the issues of water and sanitation, water quality and the demand for water, among others.
Defence 2014: A review of South Africa's defence industry (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s Defence 2014 report examines South Africa’s defence industry, with particular focus on the key participants in the sector, the innovations that have come out of the sector, local and export demand, South Africa’s controversial multibillion-rand...
Road and Rail 2014: A review of South Africa's road and rail infrastructure (PDF report)
Creamer Media’s Road and Rail 2014 report examines South Africa’s road and rail transport system, with particular focus on the size and state of the country’s road and rail network, the funding and maintenance of these respective networks, and the push to move road...
Real Economy Year Book 2014 (PDF Report)
This edition drills down into the performance and outlook for a variety of sectors, including automotive, construction, electricity, transport, steel, water, coal, gold, iron-ore and platinum.
Real Economy Insight: Automotive 2014 (PDF Report)
This four-page brief covers key developments in the automotive industry over the past 12 months, including an overview of South Africa’s automotive market, trade figures, production and the policies influencing the sector.
 
 
 
 
 
This Week's Magazine
South Africa remains an important manufacturing and export platform for Ford Motor Company, says executive chairperson Bill Ford. However, he adds that other countries on the continent are “becoming interesting”, and that the US carmaker is casting its net wider for...
TO BE PHASED INTO SERVICE The first MeerKAT dish, with another 63 to come
Germany’s Max-Planck-Society (MPG) and the Max-Planck-Institute for Radio Astronomy (MPlfR) are investing €11-million (about R150-million) into South Africa’s MeerKAT radio telescope array programme. The money will be used to design, build and install S-band radio...
Infrastructure spend in sub-Saharan Africa will grow from $70-billion in 2013 to $180-billion by 2025, says PwC capital projects and infrastructure Africa leader Jonathan Cawood. This is one of the findings of PwC’s Capital Projects & Infrastructure report on East...
Private-owned defence and aerospace manufacturer Paramount Group and the Ichikowitz Family Foundation unveiled its Anti-Poaching Skills and K9 Training Academy in Magaliesburg last month.
MATT BARKER Wireless networks should enable users to engage and must provide relevant information to them based on their activity and location
The inclusion of Bluetooth to provide sub-three meter accuracy and heightened functionality for users is one of the ways to change existing wireless networks into engagement networks. An engagement network differs from common wireless networks in that it enables the...
 
 
Murray & Roberts (M&R) Infrastructure has been awarded a contract by the North West provincial government’s Department of Public Works and Roads to upgrade 58.4 km of gravel roads in the Ganyesa area, north-west of Vryburg, by May 2016.
Transport Minister Dipuo Peters has published various amendments to the Gauteng e-Road regulations in the Government Gazette for public comment. Among the proposed amendments was a requirement that “foreigners” now had to “comply with the provisions relating to the...
Construction has started on the Ekurhuleni metropolitan municipality’s new Integrated Rapid Public Transport Network (IRPTN) service that would connect the nine separate towns of Gauteng’s East Rand, through integrating new bus networks, existing bus services,...
Article contains comments
More
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Alert Close
Embed Code Close
content
Research Reports Close
Research Reports are a product of the
Research Channel Africa. Reports can be bought individually or you can gain full access to all reports as part of a Research Channel Africa subscription.
Find Out More Buy Report
 
 
Close
Engineering News
Completely Re-Engineered
Experience it now. Click here
*website to launch in a few weeks