Transparent Factory

I’m planning on linking to this in tomorrow’s Big Picture, but the car junkie in me found it just so fascinating I had to post early:  Virtual Tour of VW’s Transparent Factory

Its way cool, despite the abysmal pun the editors threw in; "We visit this glass house, home of the new Phaeton. Sure enough, nobody¹s throwing stones." I guess (sure enough) the Eds couldn’t help themselves.

Source:  Car and Driver

Here’s an excerpt from the article:

In a bid to prove to customers that this luxury car is indeed different from all the others, the company has set up a factory, at a cost of some 186 million euros (roughly $208,000,000 at current exchange rates) that is unique in all the world. The building is located in the heart of Dresden, Germany, an 800-year-old city known for its arts and craftsmanship. The factory’s walls are made almost entirely of glass — over 290,000 square feet of it. Its floors are covered entirely in Canadian maple. And its layout is visitor-friendly, set up to receive, per day, 250 tourists (by advance reservation at 5 euros each), customers, or prospects (gratis). There are no smokestacks, no loud noises, and no toxic byproducts. Parts arrive, and luxury cars depart . . .

Hat tip:  Linkfilter

Update: January 7, 2005 4:32 pm

There is a terrific collection of photos here:

A photo tour of the Transparent Factory in Dresden

What's been said:

Discussions found on the web:
  1. Jay SoloJay Solo commented on Oct 20

    Talk about the Substance of Style, eh?

    My reaction when I saw the picture, before reading the article past the title was “oh, neat!”

  2. meta-roj blog commented on Oct 20

    transparency is good for companies

    ok, so this isn’t quite what you might expect, but what a great tangent….) as i was wandering, i ran into barry ritholtz – and he points to an interesting example of how transparency is working for at least one…

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