MOBIS started supplying front and rear chassis modules for two of the Chrysler group’s 2011 models, as agreed in a $2 billion contract between the companies.
The all new MOBIS plant on West Fort Street in Detroit, MI was inaugurated with a ceremony for 200 people in attendance. This included the COO for the global business division Lee Joon-hyung, as well as Chrysler technology and purchasing executive Fred Solomon and executive vice-president of the United Auto Workers (UAW) Bob King and - on June 4.
Aptly named MOBIS Michigan Plant (MNA-MI), the facility will kick off by making front and rear suspension modules for the Jeep Grand Cherokee, which will start assembly in June at Chrysler’s Jefferson North Assembly Plant (JNAP) and for the Dodge Durango, which will be made starting in November.
The front chassis module combines 11 separate parts such as the steering shaft, the caliper and brake disk. The rear chassis module also involves 11 separate parts put together, including the control arm and the spring and shock module.
The modules, front and rear, that MOBIS supplies play the role of a backbone that supports the entire car. While it affects passenger comfort and their sensed quality, Korean SUVs like the Sorento R are also equipped with similar style modules.
After signing the contract with Chrysler, MOBIS rented an 810,000 sq. ft. site and a 170,000 sq. ft. building about 13 mi away from the Chrysler plant, thus setting up its new production line and administrative office. Focused on a reinforced Error Proof System, the plant is the first to implement a quality control system that lets workers to check for defect at each stage.
All production line workers log onto their personal computers to start work and check instructions, assembly videos and quality information through the computer. Thirty racks for bi-product prevention, 25 bar code systems categories and 86 bolting assurance systems were put in, so that advanced electrical tools are used for all processes that require bolting to improve precision.
Using eight comprehensive processes, the plant also enacted the Vision System, where the module assembly is monitored for quality through a camera. Thus, when each part on the chassis module is assembled on each of the four positions (i.e. above, below, left and right), the locking value and all other information that occur in each of the manufacturing processes remain in the records for 10 years to guarantee quality.
Global Business Division COO Lee Joon-hyung said that “MOBIS has been supplying complete chassis modules for the Jeep Wrangler since 2006. Being able to do the same for the Jeep Cherokee again is a very meaningful experience. As MOBIS modules are becoming trusted in the automotive industry for their quality and technology, we plan to take an aggressive stance to win more contracts with carmakers in North America and Europe.”
Meanwhile, MOBIS is not only making large-scale modules, but also turning its attention to developing and exporting smaller components that make up the module. After signing a contract with Chrysler in 2002 for steering columns, MOBIS has been exporting steering columns, ABS and ESC braking systems, safety parts like airbags and lamps to such companies as Volkswagen, BMW and GM.