It was a grand opening so a ribbon was cut

It was a grand opening so a ribbon was cut

Magna has officially opened of a new electronics manufacturing factory in Grand Blanc Township, Michigan.

The facility consolidates three nearby locations into a single factory that is as up to date as possible and worker-friendly.

Opening the 230,000-square-foot facility which cost US$50m solidifies the supplier's presence in the town where it makes vision-based driver assistance systems.

The new plant allows Magna to accelerate large-scale deployment of future technology such as advanced driver assistance systems (ADAS), advanced robotics and micro-LED lighting.

Supplying many global automakers, Magna Electronics Holly ships ADAS components to 330 different locations in North and South America, Europe and Asia.

The division started manufacturing automotive cameras in 2005 and has steadily increased its annual output as driver assistance systems have grown through regulatory measures and consumer demand.

So far, Magna Electronics Holly has made 46m ADAS components.

Magna now combines cameras with other sensors such as radar and LiDAR to develop the advanced driver assistance systems that are stepping stones to autonomy. Its systems allow drivers to activate adaptive cruise control to maintain a safe following distance and speed, use lane-keeping assist to centre the vehicle, and check blind spots to monitor adjacent travel lanes.

"We provide features to improve the daily commute and add a layer of safety," said Magna CTO Swamy Kotagiri.

"With the excitement surrounding autonomous vehicles and their potential to eliminate car crashes, it can be easy to forget the path to full autonomy lies in the safety and driver assistance systems we have today."

In addition to manufacturing ADAS components, the new facility is also home to a robotics R&D testing lab.  With continued advancements in AI the company is bringing more smart factory concepts into its operations, and this new lab allows the testing and implementation of robotics that are adaptable, flexible and work in collaboration with people.

The plant is also the home of Magna Rohinni Automotive, a joint venture formed in 2018 to develop ultra-thin, flexible micro-LED lighting.

After less than a year, the JV already has a dedicated line in the new factory and is ready for production.

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