Plugging in for Thailand’s electric future
DRÄXLMAIER and BMW in Thailand could welcome not only the Deputy Director Industrial Works of the Ministry for Industry, Kornphattawee Muangnoy, but also about 60 journalists within the framework of a joint event at the new DRÄXLMAIER plant in Chonburi. After a short introduction the guests got to know the only high-voltage battery module assembly plant for BMW PHEVs in the ASEAN region better and had a look into the production area.
"It is a major honor for us to be entrusted with the production of high-voltage batteries for BMW Group Thailand. We are a reliable BMW partner in the regions in which we operate. With 53 years of supplier partnership at the global level, we are very pleased to expand our alliance and partnership with BMW Group Manufacturing Thailand”, stressed Gerhard Irnesberger, plant manager of DRÄXLMAIER Thailand during the Inauguration ceremony. At the moment, 45 employees are working in the partly automated plant. A second shift will be starting within October this year.
Specific training in Germany
Before taking up work in Chonburi, the DRÄXLMAIER employees got a specific training at the BMW Group Competence Center for e-drive production in Munich. Equipped with a strong grasp of battery production skills, the DRÄXLMAIER employees are working on battery cells provided by suppliers in the Asian region along with other imported parts – such as aluminum housing, electronics, and cables – to roll out high-voltage batteries that meet BMW Group’s high standard. Final batteries will then be transported to Plant Rayong for the production of the PHEV version of the BMW 5 Series, which has been in operation since July 2019.
Respond to growing demands
During the Inauguration, Uwe Quaas Managing Director of BMW Group Manufacturing Thailand said: “One of the pillars of BMW Group’s global strategy is electrification. The start of local battery production enables us to better respond to growing domestic and export demands for electrified vehicles in Thailand. This new capability also strengthens the performance of Plant Rayong in fulfilling the country’s mission of sustainable mobility.”
The DRÄXLMAIER Group supplies premium automobile manufacturers worldwide with complex wiring harness systems, central electrical and electronic components, exclusive interiors, and battery systems for electromobility. The combination of core competencies in the interior, electrical, electronic and battery systems areas makes DRÄXLMAIER unique in the industry. The company thereby covers the entire process chain, from the initial idea, through the development and production process, and up to precisely in-sequence delivery of the products to the assembly lines of premium automobile manufacturers. The inventor of the customer-specific wiring harness, the DRÄXLMAIER Group develops pioneering wiring harness technology as well as electrical and electronic components, all directly in-house. These include multi-voltage and high-voltage wiring harness systems, battery management systems and intelligent power distributors. DRÄXLMAIER is working on the future of emission-free mobility with its solution for low-voltage and high-voltage battery systems. As a market leader for interior systems in premium automobiles, the DRÄXLMAIER Group also supplies premium automobile manufacturers with ambient lighting, center consoles, door panels and instrument panels, as well as complete door and cockpit modules.
The DRÄXLMAIER Group is an international automotive supplier with more than 60 sites in over 20 countries. Founded in Germany in 1958, the company employs more than 75,000 employees throughout the world. For the DRÄXLMAIER Group as an owner-managed business, responsible and long-range thinking has always been the basis for economic success. It is therefore a core element of its strategy to design its business and production processes, as well as its products, in a more sustainable manner and in that way to increase the competitiveness of the company on a long-term basis.
In 2019, the DRÄXLMAIER Group generated sales of 4.9 billion euro. Customers of this member of the Top 100 Automotive Suppliers include Audi, BMW, Jaguar, Land Rover, Maserati, Mercedes-Benz, MINI, Porsche and Volkswagen, as well as Californian automotive manufacturers.