Porsche has revealed the latest logistics concept it is using to support production of the Panamera, which has just begun at its Leipzig plant in Germany. As part of a €150m investment at the plant, the new arrangement makes it possible to deliver parts at high frequency just one hour before they are needed on the production line. It has also removed the majority of its storage space.
“I know of no other factory anywhere in the world in which the principles of lean production have been as consistently implemented as here in Leipzig,” said Michael Macht, Board member responsible for production and logistics at Porsche, speaking to journalists at the Leipzig plant this week.
Series production of Porsche’s fourth model line, the Panamera, started in the Leipzig plant in April, joining the Cayenne sports utility vehicle on one production line.
The logistics overhaul necessary to support it is part of a development that has seen the building of a new logistics centre, a 25,000m² assembly hall, a pilot and analysis centre, and a training facility.
Almost all the engines for both models are brought to Leipzig by truck from the Porsche plant in Zuffenhausen. The Panamera bodyshells are brought by rail from the Volkswagen plant in Hanover by DB Schenker Rail, Porsche’s logistics partner for 25 years. From August, three block trains with 24 cars each will leave for Leipzig per week. Since 2002 DB Schenker has also brought the partially-equipped Cayenne bodies from Bratislava. Both bodies have to arrive in a specific sequence and in the right position in order not to interfere with the precise cycle of production.
The interior of the Panamera is first assembled on a single line but once both bodies have reached the same status in the manufacturing process they run on one line until completion.