The original list for Aston Martin’s new factory had no less than 20 locations on it and in the end it was down to four sites: two were British, one was somewhere in the Middle East, and the last one was in Alabama, United States. After much consideration, St Athan in Wales was declared the winner back in February this year where AM is now setting up shop to build its second manufacturing facility.
A recruitment program began this summer to find up to 750 employees for the plant and some of them are already being trained at home in Gaydon by taking part in the assembly of the new DB11.
The new plant currently being constructed in Wales will serve the purpose of putting together a production version of the DBX concept. Aston Martin is one of the last automakers to jump on the SUV bandwagon and it will effectively do it in 2019 when production of the high-riding model will commence.
The “luxury GT crossover” as it’s being described along with the new plant in Wales represent part of a £200-million investment in new products and facilities. Aston Martin has already announced that with the road-going DBX it has plans to lure in affluent women in search of a safe premium car providing “flexibility and room for the children.”
Details about the crossover are scarce at the moment, but we remind you the concept was a technological tour de force, with electric motors installed inboard of the wheels and driven by lithium sulphur cells. Carbon ceramic brakes were also part of the package, as were the side cameras replacing the conventional mirrors. The two-door DBX was also fitted with drive-by-wire steering and auto-dimming reinforced glass windows. However, most of these goodies were just for show, so don’t expect the production version to be nearly as exciting.
Source: Aston Martin
Gallery: 2015 Aston Martin DBX concept
ASTON MARTIN IN ST ATHAN: CONSTRUCTION OF NEW FACILITY BEGINS
14 December 2016, Gaydon: Phase I of Aston Martin’s new manufacturing facility at St Athan in Wales received the green light when Aston Martin President and CEO Andy Palmer met Welsh First Minister, Rt Hon Carwyn Jones AM to finalise the sale of the St Athan site to the British luxury carmaker.
In February 2016, Aston Martin announced that it had chosen St Athan from 20 potential global locations as its second manufacturing facility as part of a £200M investment in new products and facilities. A recruitment drive this summer began the search for up to 750 new Aston Martin employees who will work at the new facility, a number of whom have already begun their training, building the new DB11 at its Gaydon Headquarters.
Aston Martin President and CEO Andy Palmer commented: “The exchanging of this contract, giving us first access to the St Athan facility, is a milestone in our 103-year history. Work now starts in earnest to turn our plans into reality.
“Since taking the decision to build our first SUV in Wales we have been impressed with the commitment and approach from both the MOD and the Welsh Government in making this project work. We continue to work with the Welsh Government in areas like recruitment to ensure we are able to meet our project timescales.”
With contracts now exchanged, Aston Martin has now commenced work on ‘Phase I’ of the St Athan site which includes the creation of the customer and staff reception areas, administration and management offices and the employee restaurant. The contract for these works was awarded to local Welsh firm TRJ Contracting beating off competition from a number of larger national companies.
‘Phase II’ will commence in April 2017 when Aston Martin will gain access to the three Ministry of Defence ‘Super Hangars’ that will house the new manufacturing facility.
First Minister of Wales, Carwyn Jones said: “We are delighted that Aston Martin has chosen to locate its new manufacturing facility here in Wales. The move is fantastic news for the Vale of Glamorgan and surrounding areas, and will provide a real boost to the local economy, resulting in thousands of high quality jobs both within Aston Martin and the wider supply chain.
“We have worked closely with Aston Martin throughout this process and I am proud that our joint hard work and co-operation will result in some 750 of our skilled workers building the Aston Martins of the future.”
Secretary of State for Wales, Rt Hon Alun Cairns MP, said: “Aston Martin choosing Wales sends a clear message to leading global companies around the world that Wales is open for business.
“We have created the ideal conditions for economic growth, which helped attract this unique and innovative car manufacturer to South Wales. Today's announcement reflects the excellent infrastructure, a world class talent pool and businesses that have the confidence to expand in Wales.”