Mercedes-Benz replaces robots with humans at Sindelfingen plant
In this day and age, most companies, especially in the automotive industry, are replacing humans with robots to save time, cut costs and improve standardisation. However, when one walks into a Mercedes-Benz dealership to put down his order for a very expensive S-Class, one does not expect to receive an ordinary vehicle that any Tom, Dick and Harry can have. No, one expects a certain level of individualisation in one's Mercedes-Benz S-Class that makes it unique. That's why Mercedes-Benz has decided to replace its robots with actual people at its plant in Sindelfingen, Germany.
As it turns out, the level of personalisation required by customers is beyond the capabilities of a robot. "Robots can't deal with the degree of individualization and the many variants that we have today. We're saving money and safeguarding our future by employing more people," says Markus Schaefer, Mercedes-Benz's head of production.
An added benefit of reduced automation is the flexibility of shifting a production line. According to Schaefer, Mercedes-Benz can shift a production line within a weekend if people were working in it, whereas it would take weeks to reprogram the robots and change the assembly patterns. During this period, production would come to a complete halt.
This however, does not mean that on one fine morning, there'd be a giant pile of robots stacked outside the Sindelfingen plant. In fact, from now on Mercedes-Benz will simply use smaller and more flexible robots that will work side-by-side with human workers. This is something that Mercedes-Benz calls 'robot farming'. "We're moving away from trying to maximize automation, with people taking a bigger part in industrial processes again," says Schaefer on future plans. "We need to be flexible."
Starts Rs 1.33 Crore
- NewsIsuzu India announces cricketer Jonty Rhodes as new brand ambassador for D-Max V-Cross
- NewsHonda Navi crosses one lakh sales mark
- NewsMaruti Suzuki increases prices of all its models in India
- Review2018 Suzuki Burgman Street road test review
- NewsYamaha YZF-R15 Moto GP limited edition and new colour options for Yamaha FZS-Fi launched at Rs 1.3 lakh and Rs 87,042
- NewsNext-gen Hyundai Santro design sketch unveiled, to launch in October 2018
- NewsSportier Toyota Yaris TRD Sportivo shown at GIIAS 2018
- News2018 Bajaj Pulsar NS160 with rear disc brake priced at Rs 82,630
- NewsUpcoming Mahindra Marazzo MPV cabin revealed, available in 7 and 8 seater layouts
- NewsBenelli Imperiale 400 to be launched in India by mid-2019