Mercedes McLaren SLR Production

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Mercedes McLaren SLR Production

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Production of the Mercedes-Benz SLR McLaren at the McLaren Technology Centre in Woking, England, utlises both the advanced production systems of Mercedes and the sports car manufacturing expertise of McLaren.

Around 140 highly qualified staff manufacture up to 500 units of the Gran Turismo at the McLaren Technology Centre, McLaren’s HQ, each year. During the vehicle’s seven-year lifespan, the plant is intended to produce 3,500 cars. In total, the McLaren Technology Centre measures approximately 22,500 square metres, 4000 of which are utilised for SLR production.

The centre also houses the Team McLaren Mercedes’ Formula 1 activities. Three of the seven production wings in the building complex are dedicated to the painting and final assembly of the SLR. The remaining four production wings are occupied by Team McLaren Mercedes Formula 1, McLaren Electronic Systems, McLaren Marketing and McLaren Applied Technologies.

The 460-kW/626-hp V8 engine comes from Mercedes-AMG GmbH in Affalterbach, while the specialists from McLaren Composites in Portsmouth deliver the carbon fiber body-in-white. The McLaren Technology Centre is the hub of production where all components are brought together and assembled and where final stages of production and testing take place.

The bodies-in-white are shipped to Woking from Portsmouth, around 100 km away. In the paint shop, which is located opposite the final assembly hall, the carbon fiber surface is painted by means of a special process. The final assembly of the SLR is mostly done by hand and takes place at nine stations along an 80m production line. Each step is carried out in keeping with the standards and processes of the ‘Mercedes-Benz Production System’, which was adapted to take into account the special circumstances of the SLR.

Before moving on to the next station, each vehicle must pass a ‘quality gate’, to ensure high and consistent standards. Following

the assembly process, each vehicle undergoes a final test on the rolling test rig as well as driving tests used to fine-tune the chassis.

The production process for the SLR was thoroughly tested and optimized even before series production was launched. To prepare the employees for the special requirements associated with this particular series production run, the production technicians made the SLR prototypes as well.

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