April 11, 2012
25 years of Automotive Technical Center in Finland
The grand opening of the Saab-Valmet Technical Center was celebrated in Uusikaupunki, Finland 25 years ago. The development center was a significant milestone for the company in transformation from manufacturing to providing also engineering services. Today, reinforcing engineering services is a key element in the strategy of the company - today known as Valmet Automotive.
The most important development project of the new Technical Center in late 1980's was the Saab 900 Cabriolet. It was an exclusively Finnish model, and the product development was centered in Uusikaupunki. The first generation Saab Cabriolet exceeded all expectations by far. Also the second generation was developed and manufactured in Uusikaupunki.
Indeed, cabriolets became a core competence area of the company. One third of the cars manufactured by Valmet Automotive in Uusikaupunki are convertibles, including Saab Cabriolet models and the Porsche Boxster roadster sports cars.
Valmet Automotive has also been proactive in developing convertible expertise. The amount of convertible concepts is close to 20. Many have been displayed at the Geneva Motor Show, but several are customer projects that have never been disclosed. Besides engineering the roof systems, the company also specializes in convertible frame structures and interior changes.
The tradition of product engineering in Uusikaupunki is now continued by the new Valmet Automotive, as the ex-Karmann roof systems units were acquired by Valmet Automotive about 18 months ago. The company benefited from top level professionals in convertible engineering and the decades of convertible experience of the company.
The latest focus area of Valmet Automotive is engineering electric vehicles, represented by the concept vehicle Eva from 2010 and the Dawn introduced this year. The Technical Center is currently working on EV technology projects in connection with the Finnish national EVE initiative. Project management is another essential part of the engineering services offering of Valmet Automotive. The company can provide automotive customers with complete vehicle projects from engineering to manufacturing.
Valmet Automotive is an experienced provider of automotive engineering, vehicle manufacturing, convertible roof systems and related business services. Our special areas of expertise are premium cars, convertibles and electric vehicles. We employ 1,700 professionals in Finland, Germany, Poland, Sweden, China and the USA.