FPT Industrial’s joint venture in China, SFH (SAIC Fiat Hongyan Powertrain Co Ltd), is celebrating a new record for the number of engines produced during a single month at its manufacturing facility in Chongqing. In May, the plant recorded an increase in engine output of 6% on the previous record, which was set the month before.
Despite being faced with the impact of COVID-19, SFH has established a leading market position based on FPT’s lean innovation and technical strength, and has won end-user recognition around the world thanks to its excellent product quality. The overall increase in production and sales in April and May not only reflects the plant’s strategic deployment and response to the pandemic, but the globally-recognized performance of SFH engines.
The rise in production output at the Chongqing factory is in direct response to sales growth. Sales in the heavy truck market over the first four months of 2020 demonstrated a V-shaped trend curve, with record sales in January. However, as the effects of COVID-19 began to subside in April, the market returned to an upward trend, developing momentum in both production and sales.
As a major powertrain supplier, SFH has measures in place regarding its control plans to help cope during exceptional circumstances, such as the current pandemics. “Upon the resumption of manufacturing, it was therefore possible to implement specially-devised production strategies in response to rising orders within the framework of the plant’s WCM (World Class Manufacturing) management system,” said Federico Gaiazzi, SFH General Manager. “The work of the full team was fundamental to achieving this result”.
Grasping the ethos of prevention and control in one hand, and focusing on the resumption of work in the other, all employees at the SFH plant are fully motivated, with many currently working overtime. The power of the whole factory has been ignited to ensure production meets the order demands of dealers and users in the shortest possible timeframe. Moreover, extending the WCM management system to all processes, and even suppliers, is helping to achieve the ‘5 zero objectives’ in production: zero accidents, zero failures, zero waste, zero defects and zero inventory.
At Chongqing, SFH has four cylinder head production lines and two assembly production lines. The cylinder head lines are equipped with 40 large-format machining centers that produce components 24-hours a day to help the plant not only achieve record monthly output levels, but provide an important contribution to the recovery of global consumption.
Further contributors are FPT’s lean innovation and technical strength, helping SFH meet market demand for high-quality, low-emission engines. FPT and SFH have co-operated comprehensively in areas that extend from research and development, through system integration, to actual road tests, in order to achieve the optimized match between engine and vehicles.
In terms of technological innovation, the latest SFH low-emission engines use a highly efficient Hi-eSCR exhaust after-treatment system without EGR (engine gas recirculation). Based on more than 26 years’ research into SCR (selective catalyst reduction) technology by FPT Industrial, the system can achieve ultra-high (>95%) conversion efficiency of nitrogen oxides. Importantly, Hi-eSCR does not need additional technology to make up for lost power, and does not require a larger engine size and cooling system to reduce the additional heat dissipation it brings, greatly reducing running costs. Compared with competitive products, Hi-eSCR can reduce fuel consumption by 3%, while the maintenance interval of the DPF (diesel particulate filter) is 20% longer, contributing to lower maintenance costs.
Behind the breakthroughs in production and sales are the hard work and co-operation of SFH employees. As a major diesel engine manufacturing company, SFH has always adhered to the principles of being user-centered and market-oriented, while continuously looking to improve capabilities. Moving forward, SFH will strive for faster and better development, and deliver more value for customers.
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