New Global Strategy Remanufacturing without borders

Remanufacturing is a tradition at ZF. Since 1962, remanufacturing components in OEM quality has provided a fast and sustainable repair solution. ZF Services is now rolling out ground-breaking processes for remanufacturing non-ZF transmissions around the world. Breaking into new markets and acquiring new customers.

Mobility should be environmentally sustainable worldwide. Beyond emissions and emission limits, environmental sustainability also means doing a better job of conserving our resources. The concept of remanufacturing at ZF Services is a key to this. At ten locations on four continents, many components are already being remanufactured, including passenger car transmissions.

However, for many markets and for non-ZF transmissions, there has not been one global turnkey solution so far. Therefore, ZF Services has now brought its global remanufacturing strategy up to the next level by creating new processes that will considerably benefit more market partners than in the past.

As good as new: remanufactured components in OEM quality.

China as a pilot market

The project was implemented in less than one year. Dr. Jun Xu, head of sales at ZF Services in China, explains: “China was a particularly good choice as a pilot market because the strict trade laws forbid the import of used or remanufactured mechanical-eletrical parts for sales, so that frequently only new products can be imported, which is costly.” This meant that the Chinese market was unable to benefit from the well-established remanufacturing centers in Europe or the U.S.

At the end of 2014, an interdisciplinary team began working intensively on building up a remanufacturing center in China which will also have the capacity to remanufacture non-ZF components. What was unique about this project was that right from the start, representatives from automotive manufacturers were invited to the table in order to help shape the processes and the transfer individual know-how successfully. This close collaboration was additionally the key to securing the supply of so-called “cores,” or the used parts, as well as the remanufactured transmissions. Initial efforts focused on the popular 6/8/9HP transmissions that are installed in the well-established BMW, Jaguar, Land Rover and Audi models in China.

“We have therefore already implemented a dropship system for Chrysler in China. A dropship or drop shipment is an intracompany resale in which we deliver the remanufactured parts directly to the OES workshop and also pick up the cores from there on behalf of Chrysler. This means the manufacturer no longer has to store automatic passenger car transmissions in its warehouse. We could also offer the same system to our major trade partners,” adds Peter Corbe, head of Passenger Car OES Sales at ZF Services.

International roll-out

“The new processes are currently also being established in Europe and North America. It will enable ZF Services to function as a one-stop shop for remanufacturing ZF and non-ZF transmissions anywhere in the world according to customer-specific needs and to supply to international customers,” reports Norbert Schmelz, national sales manager of OES at ZF Services U.S.

The benefits are obvious: In case of repairs, partners are able to purchase an adequate, inexpensive alternative for the respective vehicle anywhere and get it quickly. It therefore takes no longer than three days from the time a damage report is received until a remanufactured ZF or non-ZF transmission is delivered. Another advantage is that remanufactured components help to reduce the local CO2 footprint. “Energy consumption and emissions are reduced by 90 percent, the remanufacturing process requires 50 to 90 percent fewer materials compared to manufacturing a new transmission,” adds Jens Uhl, head of Remanufacturing & Repair at ZF Services. This is a development that is true to the ZF Services strategy of shaping the future “In the region, for the region”.

The global process of ZF Services opens remanufacturing for additional markets and products.

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