DAF is to invest €200 million in its cab plant in Westerlo, Belgium in order to be prepared for future production volumes as DAF further expands its success world-wide.
DAF opened its Westerlo plant in 1966, where – in addition to cabs – it has also manufactured its own axles since the early seventies. The current workforce of 2,800 employees produces axles and cabs for the heavy and medium duty trucks that come off the production lines in Eindhoven, Netherlands and in Leyland, United Kingdom.
With the €200 million investment, production capacity of the cab plant increases by some 45 per cent to 300 cabs per day in a 2-shift operation. This number will be in line with capacity of the new Cab Paint Factory, which was officially opened at the end of 2017, following an investment of €100 million.
For the ‘body-in-white’ assembly of the DAF CF and XF cabs, the existing 17,800 m2 Cab Body Welding factory will be expanded by 13,200 m2. The extension will feature a single-line lay-out with some 130 highly advanced robots and 135 fully automated welding guns, to provide world-class quality, efficiency and ergonomics.
The Cab Trimming plant (15,600 m2) will be expanded by 20,000 m2. The new facility will have multiple sections, including a main assembly line, a roof assembly line and door and cockpit sub-assembly lines. It will also include a highly advanced test and inspection department. In the main assembly line an advanced ‘skillet’-system will be applied for class-leading ergonomics, enabling employees to adapt working height to suit operations and individual preferences.
DAF president, Harry Wolters: “The new state-of-the-art cab body and cab trimming factories are required for DAF to further grow both inside and outside Europe. Upon completion, the new facilities will be the most modern of their kind, setting the benchmark in quality, efficiency and ergonomics. Above all, the investment of €200 million once again illustrates DAF’s confidence in the future of its plant in Belgium.”