Visiting the Mini Production Plant
Year 10 - Year 13 DT & Business Studies visit the Mini Production Plant in Oxford.
Our pupils had the fantastic opportunity to learn about the industrial manufacture and assembly of the BMW Mini.
They witnessed the organisation of a production line including the vast array of robots which undertake the role of sub assembly of parts and the quality control required to maintain such a highly efficient plant.
Following a tour of the ‘Body in white’ where there are 1000 robots, students gained a real insight into ‘Just in time’ production where 1 Mini is completed every 54 seconds to a customer specification. Perceptron cameras inspect the work at key points of the build and are accurate to half the width of a human hair. At the final assembly plant we saw the Mini’s take shape with the fitting of the cockpit, front end and electrical wiring harness. An engine marriage, some wheels, fluid fill and door fitting leads to the finished Mini as we watched them drive off for final checks.
Students were enthused to hear of the sustainability policies and how they sourced raw materials. The combination of a capital-intensive yet labour-intensive approach fascinated the students, as did the production line itself. The vibrant environment offered students a first-hand opportunity to experience UK Manufacturing on their doorstep whilst learning key operational management terminology to support their GCSE Business GCSE progress.