The Porsche Panamera in to a mean racing machine. It is being built at the newly transformed Porsche production facility in Leipzig, Germany. The $500 million expansion includes a 20,000 sq ft quality testing center for testing parts, AR and a computer optimized system for just-in-time parts. The Panamera will cost $98,300; here’s why and how they build it.
- Quality Control: The testing center does its job, making sure all the parts are premium quality and built exactly to specifications, so the process doesn’t get held up down the assembly line. Other Porsche models will be built this way in the future too.
- Perfect Modeling: At the center of building the perfect car is a perfect model. And the one pictured here is built on a zero tolerance chassis. Every part used in the Panamera is built to perfection after this prototype.
- Augmented Reality: Tablet based tech is used for AR to see whether parts are interfering with each other in the car. Once that’s established, the AR can also be used to control lights and power windows in the car to ensure perfect functionality.
- Precision: Porsche engineers measure the exact dimensions of body panels and tail lights so that everything fits perfectly.
- Making your mark: Engineers still use handwritten markings and stickers. These act as reference points for scanning components.
- Robots: Modular robots are reconfigurable to accommodate the three vehicles they manufacture. Each station takes two minutes to complete and 200 humans oversee 475 robots that produce 13 chassis across three stations per hour.
- Efficient work: The production facility is one of the most efficient in the world. It has a photovoltaic array on the roof that produces 800,000 kWh per year, LED lighting and energy efficient joining technologies like screws that don’t need pre drilling to save on costs and energy.
- Check your work: This is where the painting begins. There is a conveyor belt four miles long in the paint shop with LEDs laid out in uniform strips to detect small imperfections that can be fixed on the spot. The body can be painted in 11 colours or 200 custom shades.
- Making the whole body: After the chassis is made, tyres, cockpit, wire harness, brake lines and fuel tank etc. are all put together. This is all done by a combination of robots and manual labour of course.
- Vroom Vroom: Here comes the engine. Porsche makes the Panamera V6 turbo engine in another facility. A robotic sled carries everything over to the chassis.
- Bring it All Together: Porsche auto workers join the chassis, powertrain and completed body together. An electric overhead conveyor carries the cars around and lowers them in to the assembly line. There they’re mated to the underbody and they reattach the doors.
- Last check: Engineers and auto workers check their work again and then add the fuel, brake fluid, coolant etc. And there you have it.