Tower International is a leading manufacturer of engineered automotive structural metal components and assemblies primarily serving original equipment manufacturers (“OEMs”). We offer our automotive customers a broad product portfolio, supplying body-structure stampings, frame and other chassis structures, and complex welded assemblies for small and large cars, crossovers, pickups, and sport utility vehicles.
We believe that our engineering, manufacturing, and program management capabilities, combined with our competitive cost and quality, financial discipline and colleague engagement position us for continued long-term success.
Tower Chicago is a 400,000 square foot facility in the supplier park supporting the Ford Chicago Assembly Plant. It has supported production of the Ford Taurus and Explorer since before Tower’s IPO. With the introduction of the all-new Ford Explorer this year, we successfully demolished and removed the old Ford Explorer lines and installed the new lines in 40 days.
This video shows the new lines that Kuka, our systems integrator in Livonia, MI, disassembled and shipped using more than 300 trucks to drive the 250 miles to Chicago. The demolition at Tower Chicago took place concurrently, with more than 200 truckloads of old equipment removed from the plant, the new lines reassembled, and power turned on before the end of March.
Tower produces the front apron and the rear floor assembly on both the new and old versions of the Ford Explorer, however, previous models did not use hot stamped, aluminum, aluminum castings, aluminum-extruded parts, high strength steel, and hydroforming. While we do not produce all of these parts, as our customer directs some sourcing, we must integrate them all into our assembly. The value Tower brings to our customer is in our ability to join these items and provide a complete assembly into Ford’s assembly facility.
As fuel efficiency and emissions regulations tighten globally, the continued lightweighting and electrification of vehicles is expected. Having the expertise and the capability to bring lightweighting materials together is a great example of how Tower has been able to increase our value add to our customers.