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Discussion in 'Chevrolet Volt' started by cwerdna, Oct 7, 2011.
Hope this isn't a repost..
GM streamlines Volt plant, delays 2nd shift - Yahoo! Finance
Well yes, they found slave drivers that are ambidextrous and handle two whips simultaneously! You get twice as much work out of the gang!
That's great, you're more productive.
Now you can get more cars out on the dealer lots. After all, the big hold up in sales was becaue you were retooling the plant. Right?
Nightly Business Report tonight mentioned them not adding the 2nd shift and again referred to it is an "electric car".
Thats ridiculous! Everyone knows its more car than electric.
They should streamline their marketing:
"The Chevy Volt: Hype > Car > Electric"
That must have been on heck of an inefficient line, if they've managed to make it so much more efficient that they don't need an entire 2nd shift. I sense there's some spin here that is hiding something. If somehow this is entirely true, it makes you wonder just how inefficient the rest of their lines are, too.
16,000 to 60,000 output increase with the same shift? Sure, the decision to cancel the second shift has nothing to do with the Plugin Prius that is coming out.
I wonder if they use half as many welds, screws, and bolts!
That would speed things up!
I wouldn't be surprised if some of the bottlenecks were from further up the supply chain and not so much due to assembly. I'd imagine they could crank up the rate at Detroit-Hamtramck quite a bit and deplete their supply of parts on hand which doesn't do any good, in the long run.
I didn't know that lower than expected demand for your product is now considered increased efficiency.
GM Exec to CEO: "It's amazing, but to produce the Volt we don't need two shifts after all, only one."
CEO to Shareholders: "We have found an innovative method of cutting costs."
And lo the consultant came upon the captain and presented the Plan,
The captain gave the Plan to the seaman who would need to implement it, and sought their input from his chain of command.
The seamen recognized the plan as horse sh*t and a complete waste of time and resources, and so they told the Chief the same.
The Chief knew he could not speak so bluntly with the officers so he told the Division officer the men hated it and likened it to manure.
The Division Officer reported to the Department Head that the men described the Plan as fertilizer.
And lo the Department Head reported to the Captain that the Plan was good and promoted growth, and so it came to pass that the seamen were burdened with the Plan, and there was much wailing and gnashing of teeth.
The article said they were adding more workers to battery production this month. Batteries are the main bottle neck with production. Anouther bottle neck is likely parts from aisin that may have been affected by the tsunami. The aisin bottle neck is likely over now.
There is also some magic going on here. If you plan on making 60,000 cars in 2012 and increase production to 50,000 on one shift, you can delay putting those extra people on until later in 2012. Let's say you make 25,000 in the first six months. If sales are good, you add a second shift. If they are bad, you never add it. You need more production if parts are scarce. They can temporarily add a second shift for a month before a model year change over to build inventory before plant shut down. Then again if you thought the volt would be adding those jobs because green cars make green jobs, the PR says those jobs like many promised ones are unlikely to come around.
GM half or eighth truths
First they say that thousands of workers aere needed to meet production plans
Then they say a few dollars a car have been saved per car
The facts are contradictory
Their ever-changing story has always been a source of trouble. That contributed heavily to my blogging. I couldn't remember what was said when.
Annoucements like this are clearly damage control, not wanting to get stuck with an excessive of inventory like they have with trucks.
To be clearer
GM says savings are ten million for the run of 2012
2200 promised workers not hired
10,000,000 / 2200 = 4545 dollars a worker a year
GM lied through its teeth for the federal bailout, and the truth is coming out.
Well this doesn't make sense to me. I thought that the Volt was in such high demand that all were being sold almost immediately. If they are now able to in one shift create what would have taken two (how they were that bad before let's just ignore), why not get the second shift going anyway and now making four times as many as before? Why no third shift? The take-home here is that the Volt is only able to sell enough cars that a single shift can produce? Is the factory therefore idle, lights off for 16 hours/day?
Also, is there honestly still a soul on this earth who thinks GM will make 60k Volts next year? I tell you now: if it happens I will be completely flabbergasted. Even without the new Prius lineup I don't think Volt demand is anywhere near high enough for such production numbers. I cannot fathom them selling 5k/month, unless there is a trick up their sleeve that lets them cut the price by another $8,000.
Well not half as many, but it is common for a manufacturer to go overboard with the initial design to get it out fast. In the meantime do more studies and find the actual weak points in the design, and remove the "excess" from the other bits. Of course this involves retesting structurally. If there exists crash test ratings for the 2011 and different ratings for the 2012 (even if they are the same results, just a different test) then this is probably one of the things they "improved" upon. If however the crash ratings are just 2011-2012, then they did not.
The gating item is parts, this is about the assembly line. Without parts you can't speed up assembly.
The volt line likely was off much more than 16 hours a day until changeover finished in august. If the line was redesigned it likely is running at lower than full capacity now waiting for parts. It is likely they are running the line slower instead of having people work hard then go home early The toyota plants that were waiting for parts did this instead of closing completely down for weeks.
Some tricks are obvious, they expect a redesigned engine built in america that meets standards for single occupant carpooling in california, higher volume cuts costs, fleet sales. I have no idea if they will hit the goal of 45K domestic sales and 15K going into stock or international sales, but I would not count that or discounting out just yet. It really is too early to tell. It will be interesting to see how the volt does once the c-max energi and hyundai plug in are released. I'm thinking price cut.
And focus electric, Q2, 2012.