Peugeot is still about two years away from launching what will likely be among the first if not the first light duty vehicle with a diesel hybrid. The 3008 HYbrid4 crossover goes into production in 2011, but the manufacturing teams have to get ready now. Pilot process engineering to develop the work flow for building this new system has recently been kicked off at Peugeot. Peugeot's new hybrid system is a through-the-road setup where a conventional diesel engine drives the front wheels and an electric motor drives the rears.
Like power split hybrids currently in use, this system can drive the vehicle on electricity alone or in blended mode, as well as providing regenerative braking. The manufacturing engineering teams have been working on a number of lean manufacturing projects to help streamline assembly of the new system. The company's plant in Sochaux, France has already built a number of prototypes. The press release is after the jump.
PSA Peugeot Citroën Launches Pilot Process Engineering Phase For Diesel Hybrid Production at the Mulhouse and Sochaux plants
Several months ago, PSA Peugeot Citroën's Mulhouse and Sochaux plants launched pilot projects to process engineer the new HYbrid4 hybrid diesel 4WD technology.
Applying highly innovative quality and lean manufacturing methods, the two plants have put together in-house teams to engineer the processes and facilities for HYbrid4 technology, scheduled to enter production in 2011.
HYbrid4 technology combines an HDi diesel engine and an electric motor, which is located on the rear axle. To support this technology, the Group has developed a unique rear-axle assembly on which the electric motor will be mounted. The modular architecture of this technology means that it is portable across several vehicle types, irrespective of the engine type.
Over recent months teams at the Mulhouse plant's mechanical assembly unit have deployed a series of lean manufacturing projects aimed at improving the organization of the workshop that will assemble the new electric drivetrain. PSA Peugeot Citroën's lean manufacturing enables efficiency, quality and costs to be optimised through teamwork.
This is a highly complex process, because it involves the assembly of both conventional mechanical parts and newer electrical components. By using a full-scale 3-D model to create a virtual workshop, team leaders and technicians are identifying ways to drive improvements in both efficiency and quality. These simulations are designed to optimize use of floor space, enhance workstation ergonomics and generally facilitate handling and assembly while streamlining logistics flows. Their outcomes will also be used to prepare precise specifications for suppliers.
Several prototype Peugeot 3008 vehicles fitted with HYbrid4 technology have already rolled off the prototype assembly line at the Sochaux plant. The Integration of the hybrid drivetrain into the vehicle was completed in record time by leveraging the extensive hybrid-drivetrain expertise acquired in recent years, most notably on the Citroën C4 and Peugeot 308. Development work was further accelerated by routinely using digital tools, which model both physical and virtual aspects of the process and by locating the entire Hybrid project team on-site. Cellular working also got the best out of the teams and accelerated development.
Several months from now, PSA Peugeot Citroën will finalise how the production of this future technology will be organized.
PSA Peugeot Citroën unveiled its HYbrid4 diesel-electric technology at the 2008 Paris Auto Show. With an HDi diesel engine and an electric motor at the rear, the innovative technology delivers a multitude of benefits. In addition to considerable fuel savings and around a 35% reduction in CO2 emissions, the technology introduces a new breed of all-wheel drive thanks to an electric motor, which powers the rear wheels. It also opens the door to more extensive use of electric vehicles as a choice for city driving. From 2011, the crossover Peugeot 3008 followed by the Citroën DS5, will be the first of the Group's vehicles to benefit from this cutting edge technology.