As Porsche continues its quest to improve fuel efficiency and meet upcoming CAFE standards, the need for increased use of lightweight materials in manufacturing becomes more and more important. With that in mind, Porsche announced they have agreed to buy the machine tool unit of industrial robot maker Kuka to enhance their production techniques using aluminum, carbon fiber and other lightweight materials.
Dr Oliver Blume, Member of the Executive Board – Production and Logistics at Porsche AG, explained the importance of toolmaking: “Innovative tool concepts are enabling us to implement the emotional design typical of Porsche with the maximum possible quality. The employees of our new subsidiary are distinguished by their very high level of expertise across every step of the toolmaking process. We are especially able to profit from this expertise in complex aluminium parts relevant to lightweight design,” said Oliver Blume.
As for the current 600 employees of Kuka, it looks like their jobs are safe for now.
“We are delighted to welcome more than 600 specialists into our Porsche family,” said Uwe Hück, Chairman of the Group Works Council. “I can assure the new colleagues that Porsche – Executive Board and employee representatives together – will ensure that the jobs are safeguarded in the long term. That is what Porsche stands for and also what we stand for.”
According to the reports we read, the purchase could cost Porsche anywhere from 10 million euros ($11.34 million) and 25 million euros. However, no deal specific details were disclosed by either company other than an anticipated closing date of August 1st.