Construction of the Audi FAW NEV Company in Changchun, China, has been steadily advancing as planned. Established in June 2022 as a collaborative effort between Audi and FAW (First Automotive Works), the joint company laid the foundation for a state-of-the-art production site exclusively dedicated to manufacturing all-electric Audi models.
Helmut Stettner, CEO of Audi FAW NEV Company Ltd., emphasized the pivotal role this facility plays in Audi’s electrification strategy for China. “This marks Audi’s first plant in China focused solely on all-electric vehicles. Beyond production, we’re establishing a comprehensive industrial ecosystem in Changchun, set to elevate the region’s economic landscape,” Stettner stated.
The construction milestones achieved and projected timeline indicate significant progress:
- March 2021: Establishment of Audi FAW NEV Company as the first joint venture in China with Audi holding a majority stake.
- June 2022: Commencement of construction for the new production site, comprising twenty buildings.
- November 2022: Successful roofing ceremony marking completion of building structures.
- September 2023: Launch of the Test Center Changchun, a cutting-edge facility capable of accommodating up to 70 test vehicles concurrently.
- End of 2023: Completion of factory construction and installation of production facilities, including approximately 1,000 robots, an automated high-bay warehouse, heavy-duty machine presses, and advanced monitoring systems.
- 2024: Initiation of personnel relocation to the new facilities, detailed testing of production processes in preparation for series production.
- End of 2024: Planned commencement of series production for the first all-electric models based on the Premium Platform Electric (PPE).
- Spring 2025: Anticipated market launch of the first fully electric Audi model manufactured at the Changchun site, slated for early 2025.
Highlights of the plant’s scope and offerings include:
- An expansive 154-hectare area, slightly larger than Audi’s Neckarsulm plant.
- Production capacity of up to 150,000 all-electric Audi models annually, specifically designed for the Chinese market.
- Initial production focusing on three models from the Audi A6 e-tron and Q6 e-tron series.
- Comprehensive automotive production, encompassing press shop, body shop, paint shop, assembly, and a battery assembly facility for China-specific PPE models.
- Close proximity of suppliers within 30 kilometers, facilitating a localized supply chain and an exclusive supplier park adjacent to the factory.
- An international workforce of around 3,000 employees expected upon production commencement, fostering talent and diversity.
Digital technologies and sustainability efforts:
- Digital planning using advanced tools and methods such as digital twins and 3D technology, ensuring precise design alignment.
- Collaborative virtual reality enabling remote oversight and real-time discussions between construction experts in Ingolstadt and the Changchun site.
- Integration of maintenance, logistics, and manufacturing processes through a unified IT architecture, a first within the Volkswagen Group.
- Implementation of sustainable practices including water recycling, energy-efficient technologies, and rooftop solar panels generating 35 million kilowatt hours of electricity annually.
Audi FAW NEV Company’s commitment to sustainable production aligns with Audi’s global environmental program, “Mission:Zero,” aiming for responsible environmental practices and decarbonization across operations.
The company’s goal is to achieve net carbon-neutral production, employing measures to compensate for CO₂ emissions through voluntary global projects while also focusing on reducing emissions within the supply chain and during vehicle manufacturing and recycling. Additionally, the closed water cycle and green energy use contribute to sustainable and environmentally responsible production practices at the facility