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Osnabrück is where the former Karmann Company was located prior to Volkswagen purchasing them in 2009. VW built a new factory on the premises but declined to say what exactly they would build there. Turns out it is the new 2012 Porsche Boxster as the first unit rolled off the assembly line yesterday. Porsche has maxed out capacity at their Leipzig facility and needed to expand their production elsewhere. With the recently completed purchase of Porsche by Volkswagen, the timing was right to take advantage of the new factory in Osnabrück. The Volkswagen AG press release follows below…
Wolfsburg / Osnabrück, 19 September 2012 – The Volkswagen plant at Osnabrück started series production of the Porsche Boxster today. The official ceremony on the production line was attended by Prof. Dr. Martin Winterkorn, Chairman of the Board of Management of Volkswagen Aktiengesellschaft, David McAllister, Minister-President of Lower Saxony, and Matthias Müller, Chairman of the Board of Management of Porsche AG. Volkswagen and Porsche completed the creation of an integrated automotive group together in August and are now able to significantly intensify their cooperation.
Together with Winterkorn and McAllister, Boris Pistorius, Mayor of Osnabrück, Hubert Waltl, Member of the Board of Management of the Volkswagen Passenger Cars brand with responsibility for Production and Logistics, and Wolfgang Leimgruber, Member of the Board of Management of Production and Logistics, Porsche AG, were present as the first Porsche Boxster rolled off the Osnabrück production line. The Indian red Boxster S with black roof went to a customer in Bavaria, Germany.
At the production line ceremony, Prof. Winterkorn said: “The production of the Porsche Boxster in Osnabrück is a clear sign that Volkswagen and Porsche are growing together fast. Production in Osnabrück creates synergy effects that will benefit customers, employees and the plant.”
“The start of Boxster production in Osnabrück shows that the plant has established itself as a competence center for convertible and small series production within the Volkswagen Group. I am very pleased that Porsches representing premium quality made in Germany are now rolling off the production line here in Lower Saxony,” Minister-President McAllister underlined.
Porsche is producing the Boxster in a model mix with the Porsche 911 at its main plant in Stuttgart-Zuffenhausen. Production at Osnabrück will relieve a bottleneck, as the capacity available at Porsche’s Stuttgart-Zuffenhausen plant is currently not adequate.
Matthias Müller explained the decision to produce the new Boxster at Osnabrück by mentioning the special competence of the Osnabrück team. “The key factor in this decision was the very good expertise of the workforce at Volkswagen Osnabrück. Our sports cars are in the best hands here. After all, we all have the same understanding of quality. Osnabrück will become part of our success story.”
Mayor Pistorius underlined the significance of the Porsche contract for the plant. “The Boxster will provide additional impetus for the economy in Osnabrück, will secure jobs and confirms the skills of employees in our city where automobiles have been produced for more than 100 years.”
Osnabrück can look back on a long tradition of convertible and small series production. The plant in Lower Saxony has already produced a number of Porsche models in the past, including the 914 (from 1969 to 1976) and the 968 (from 1991 to 1994). Since March 2011, Volkswagen has also produced the new Golf Cabriolet in Osnabrück. The total capacity of the plant is about 100,000 vehicles per year, including the body, paint and assembly shops. For the new Boxster, which was initially assembled only in Stuttgart, the Osnabrück plant supplied the rear end and side components right from the start. The headcount at Volkswagen’s Osnabrück plant is currently more than 1,800.