Ficosa targets global gains in HEVs, opens new e-Mobility hub in Barcelona

by Autocar Pro News Desk , 10 Oct 2018

Ficosa, the Tier 1 global provider devoted to the research, development, manufacturing and marketing of high-technology vision, safety, connectivity and efficiency systems for the automotive and mobility sectors, has inaugurated its brand-new e-Mobility Hub. This hi-tech facility specialises in electromobility systems for hybrid and electric vehicles.The company has invested more than 10 million euros in this new 1,200-square metre facility located in Viladecavalls (Barcelona),  and employs more than 120 engineers, 60 of which are new hires.

According to Ficosa, the e-Mobility Hub will become a global benchmark laboratory in the development of electric mobility technology, driving the company's leadership in an area that is key for the mobility of the future. It will play a strategic role, as it will become a driving force in electromobility solutions for the whole group on an international level.

Commenting on the new unit, Ficosa CEO, Javier Pujol said: "The e-Mobility Hub is a huge milestone for Ficosa, as it puts us on the leading edge of the revolution that electric mobility is bringing about in the sector with a cutting-edge centre at a global level. Likewise, this facility joins the hubs in Connectivity and Safety that Ficosa has in Viladecavalls, consolidating its leadership in key technologies for the transformation of the automobile underway and culminating the technological transformation process in Viladecavalls."

State-of-the-art facility
The e-Mobility Hub has latest generation premises with four new laboratories certified by ASPICE, the ISO-Automotive SPICE regulations to develop mechatronic systems.

At this centre, Ficosa develops and manufactures software and hardware solutions for hybrid and electric vehicles, specifically battery-management systems (BMS) and on-board chargers (OBC). The battery-management system is a device that gives users the required safety and allows them to monitor the battery charge level at all times, as well as its health. On the other hand, the on-board charger is assembled inside the vehicle and charges the battery using an electric cable, directly from a standard alternating current (AC) power socket.

Ficosa has ambitious plans to expand the operation and according to Pujol, in 2019 the company "expects to reinforce the team at the e-Mobility Hub with 100 more engineers, as well as adding 750 square metres and another laboratory"  to cater to the multinational corporation's needs as a result of its growth in the field of electromobility.

Consolidating technology leadership
The new e-Mobility Hub joins the other hubs in Connectivity and Safety that Ficosa has in Viladecavalls, which work for the company globally. This way, Ficosa says it is reinforcing its leadership in strategic products for more aided driving, driverless vehicles, connected cars and e-mobility, which have become pillars of the group's growth.

Pujol says, "The Viladecavalls centre has positioned itself as one of the most cutting-edge in the world in vision, e-mobility, connectivity and safety technology, and is, without a doubt, the driving force for the whole technological transformation Ficosa has undergone in recent years thanks to the significant efforts we have put into the industrial reconversion of the Viladecavalls Technology Centre, as well as innovation, technology and strengthening the engineering team."

Ficosa has significantly expanded the engineering team working on these new technology products, with a record-breaking 1,170 engineers worldwide. Of these, more than 700 work at the Viladecavalls Technology Centre, the group's most important engineering centre, which last year alone hired 160 new engineers.

The strong commitment to capitalising on innovations and the latest advances in the sector has led the company to boost the resources it puts into R&D, which was roughly 8% of sales in 2017.

In 2017, Ficosa invested more than 90 million euros, 50 percent of which went to new technology. The company expects to put more than 500 million euros towards new products business between 2019 and 2023.

Founded in 1949 and based in Barcelona, Ficosa currently has more than 10,500 employees in 19 countries worldwide in Europe, North and South America, Asia and Africa, with consolidated sales of 1.208 billion euros in 2017. The rear-view system (interior/side mirror) is Ficosa’s main business, known worldwide and recognised by top global OEMs.

Also read: Ficosa develops innovative digital rearview system for Audi e-tron

Ficosa bags five contracts for battery management systems for Chinese market


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