Collins & Aikman is not just another carpet company – The Supply Side

Collins & Aikman is not just another carpet company – The Supply Side – Brief Article

Andrew Cummins

This may came as a big surprise. But Collins & Aikman is more than a carpet company. In fact, they are the global leader in instrument panel and cockpit assemblies, recently announcing that they will make the cockpit for the next generation of General Motors small cars.

And Collins and Aikman is gearing up for that project. At the company’s Auburn Hills, Mich., technical center a driving simulator measures the level of distraction for different P configurations.

The company also is working to develop synergies between joint venture partners to develop world-class cockpit modules. Their philosophy is to set up a JV with those companies who have the core competency in various aspects of cockpit development rather than take the time to develop it internally.

In product development at the center, the company focuses on six core areas: Human Machine Interface (HMI) optimization; HMI product solutions; materials and process harmony; mechanical integration; electrical and electronic integration; and materials & process harmony.

But like all companies, Collins and Aikman is faced with challenges. They constantly strive to increase the speed at which they introduce new technology. The company is searching for ways to significantly reduce cost without sacrificing quality. It is an ongoing process to meet or exceed the industry best standards of craftsmanship and consumer appeal. The company also is trying to develop processes to better manage subsystem interfaces with their JV partners.

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