Ford hopes ‘vir­tual’ fac­tory will help boost qual­ity

Yorkshire Post - Motoring - - NEWS -

FORD is de­vel­op­ing a com­plete vir­tual fac­tory to sim­u­late the full assem­bly line pro­duc­tion process. Its aim is to im­prove qual­ity and cut costs in its fac­to­ries. José Ter­rades, sim­u­la­tions en­gi­neer, Ford of Spain, says “Vir­tual fac­to­ries will en­able us to pre­view and op­ti­mise the assem­bly of fu­ture mod­els at any of our plants, any­where in the world.”

MIT­SUBISHI Mo­tors has in­stalled so­lar elec­tric pan­els made by its Elec­tric division on the roof of its UK of­fices in Cirences­ter. It can gen­er­ate 40,050 kw hours and save 17.2 tons of CO2 a year. The 196 pan­els have a life­time of more than 25 years. The com­pany launches a plug-in hy­brid car next year.

CHEVRO­LET’s sum­mer of­fers in­clude zero in­ter­est fi­nance over five years. Price cuts in­clude £1,080 off the Spark 1.0+ hatch to £7,295 or £99 a month. Four fig­ure re­duc­tions are also avail­able on some Cruze and Or­lando mod­els.

CAP, the trade val­uers, notes a re­luc­tance among su­per­sti­tious new-car buy­ers to have the “13” plate next March. The only es­cape is to choose a pri­vate plate at a cost of at least £250, says CAP’s Martin Ward. “We have no idea whether the used val­ues of 13 plate cars will be af­fected or not, al­though it does seem un­likely.”

AUDI re­ports a £25bn rev­enue, and oper­at­ing prof­its of £2.9bn on sales in the first half of the year and says it will sell more than 1.4m cars in the whole year. Push­ing the am­bi­tion is a new A3 which ar­rives in late sum­mer. The par­ent Volk­swa­gen Group saw sales rev­enue rises 22.6 per cent to £95.4bn and oper­at­ing prof­its of £6.5bn.

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