Volvo Construction Equipment announced last week it is consolidating production of its articulated haulers into two plants, and will be ending production of the vehicles at its Asheville, N.C., facility. The phase-out will free up capacity in Asheville for production of Volvo’s new skid steer and telehandler lines.
The move will affect about 90 employees in Asheville along with 70 employees and 30 consultants in Sweden.
Stefan Nordstrom, president of Volvo Articulated Haulers, said the market for the vehicles has not developed as the company expected, creating an over-capacity Volvo must address. He said the company concluded the most cost-efficient solution would be to concentrate articulated hauler production at its plants in Braas, Sweden, and Pederneiras, Brazil. Production of articulated haulers in Asheville will be gradually phased out in 2003.
Production of the Volvo skid steer has already begun in Asheville. Telehandler production will begin in 2003.
“We want to retain – and retrain – as many employees as possible from the articulated hauler operation to work with us on these new products,” said David Million, vice president and general manager of Volvo Construction Equipment North America.