Competitive assembly: Brown or green field site - Conventional or flexible plant - What's the best?

Type de publication:

Journal Article


International Journal of Automotive Technology and Management, Volume 5, Number 3, p.351-373 (2005)



The automobile industry has long been undergoing a profound industrial and competitive reorganisation process that manifests itself both on the demand and on the supply side. To respond to this situation automakers (traditionally called Original Equipment Manufacturers - OEMs) are developing new globalisation strategies that include among other things: a marked outsourcing of component production (that were formerly developed internally), the reduction in the number of first-tier suppliers (original equipment suppliers - OESs), the creation of new assembly plants (green field) in areas with low labour costs as opposed to the adaptation of existing plants (brown field), the fine-tuning of more flexible assembly processes capable of coping with short term changes in both volume and in product mix. This essay carries out a simulation, based upon quantitative hypotheses drawn from real situations aimed at comparing the attractiveness of the different solutions. The results confirm some of the theses currently brought forward, but fail to confirm some others. Copyright © 2005 Inderscience Enterprises Ltd.

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