Sunday, November 19, 2006
Volkswagen Dresden Factory
Volkswagen's Transparent Factory (Die Glaserne Manufaktur)
For all you Diecast / Matchbox car collectors, check out this Volkswagen automobile factory in Dresden, Germany. The VW management team and marketing department made the right call when they chose the architectural firm who designed this showcase. The glass display tower where the newly fabricated cars are stored recalls Matchbox hobby display imagery in no uncertain terms. The factory was opened a few years ago and tours are open to the public. Volkswagen's luxury car, the Phaeton, is manufactured at this plant.
With VW's sagging US sales, and high US VW price tags, it's easy to see why VW's overhead might be a bit bloated (as compared to Japanese manufacturers.) I don't know what the Detroit Ford and GM plants look like, but I am guessing they are nothing like the VW plant in Dresden.
But style does count for something (in my book). And the design for this factory is quite impressive on first glance (for those who admire good industrial design).
Although the plant has been open a few years, I thought I'd post the photos here because like my beloved Mac[intosh], I know VW enthusiasts are a (relatively) small group here in the States. (I sure do miss my VW...)
The VW enthusiast forum has posted several high quality photos of the plant and has more information on the plant's design, the manufacturing process, tours, etc. (Be forewarned, there are several photos, so it may take awhile for the VW Forum page to load.) The Dresden plant even has its own website where you can learn more about the factory and see more pics.
Check out both websites. It's a lot of fun -- even if you don't drive a VW.