CEG Exclusive: Tour of Mecalac's French Factory as It Unveils New MWR Series Compact Wheeled Excavator

📅   Thu September 28, 2017 - National Edition


Mecalac’s advanced manufacturing capabilities and engineering staff are often called upon to create unique applications for their machines, such as this Mecalac excavator equipped for working on Europe’s extensive rail system.
Mecalac’s advanced manufacturing capabilities and engineering staff are often called upon to create unique applications for their machines, such as this Mecalac excavator equipped for working on Europe’s extensive rail system.
Mecalac’s advanced manufacturing capabilities and engineering staff are often called upon to create unique applications for their machines, such as this Mecalac excavator equipped for working on Europe’s extensive rail system. The Mecalac factory is located in the French Alps in the beautiful and historic city of Annecy, France. Every Mecalac machine has all features and aspects of its structure personally inspected at the end of the assembly process. From there, each machine is tested for four hours to check for any manufacturing flaws. According to A.J. Lorusso of Lorusso Heavy Equipment in Mass., “When we deliver a new machine, some customers are thrown off by the fact that every machine has at least four hours on it.” Frederic LaBorde of Mecalac USA shows the actual order form created by the dealer and the customer. This form provides specifics of exactly how each machine will be configured; this form stays with the machine and is referenced throughout the entire assembly process. A.J. Lorusso, the first U.S. dealer of the Mecalac product, received a warm welcome at the reception following the introduction of the MRW (MWR) series wheeled excavators. (L-R): Paul Lorusso; Henri Marchetta, chairman and founder of Mecalac; Alexandre Marchetta, vice chairman of Mecalac; A.J. Lorusso; and Frederic LaBorde, business manager, Mecalac USA. With a touch of French elegance, a quartet of stringed instruments provided background music at the reception. The Plage De L’Imperial was a spectacular venue for Mecalac’s reception. At Mecalac’s event, members of the press and dealers from around the world were given their first opportunity to view the Mecalac MRW (MWR) series wheel loaders. The environmentally safe Mecalac paint area. As this rack containing a boom assembly leaves the paint area, it is immediately identified with exactly what carrier it will be installed on. The Mecalac employees have an obvious enthusiasm for what they do. Mecalac’s factory is extremely clean and well organized. Employees presented themselves professionally and were willing to take whatever time necessary to assure that the CEG staff and other guests were given a thorough factory tour experience. Mecalac has invested in one of the most advanced robotic parts inventory and storage systems, which assists the company in maintaining a very high percentage of next day parts fulfillment. The parts inventory system is so advanced that even small items such as nuts, bolts, washers and fittings can be robotically stored and retrieved. Every machine on the Mecalac assembly line is customized for the needs of each end-user. In Europe, it is the practice that every machine is custom-ordered for each customer. Unlike the U.S. market, where options are typically bundled together, at Mecalac customers receive a list of all options and features available and select each one that meets their needs. This photo shows a cylinder set entering the production line. It has already been determined what machine these cylinders will be put on, Frederic LaBorde, business manager, Mecalac USA, points out this turret for a Mecalac model 12MTX. Upon the completion of the manufacturing of this turret, it was dedicated to the assembly of a specific machine. This process allows Mecalac to identify any problems in its manufacturing process in the event of a machine failure once it is put into the field. Skilled Mecalac technicians install the boom on a Mecalac model 12MTX. In the early phase of production, a model 12MTX begins its journey on the Mecalac assembly line. A back blade is skillfully installed.

Earlier this year, France-based manufacturer Mecalac held a dealer meeting and press event to introduce to its more than 200 dealers worldwide the new MRW (MWR) series compact wheeled excavator.

The press conference and dealer introduction was held at the Arcadium concert and meeting hall facility in Annecy, France. Annecy also is home to Mecalac's world headquarters.

There, Construction Equipment Guide was given an exclusive opportunity to tour the Mecalac factory and experience first-hand the company's manufacturing processes, elaborate parts support and distribution network, and the rigorous testing process that each machine is put through before delivery.

In addition to introducing the MWR series excavators (a hybrid compact excavator that combines the advantages of a crawler excavator and wheeled excavator that is specifically designed for the urban market), Mecalac also had on display its full line of compact construction equipment, including its new tractor loader backhoes, side-dump trucks and double-drum asphalt rollers.

Following the event, Mecalac hosted a reception at the Plage De L'Imperial — an elegant facility located on the shore of Lake Annecy offering a breathtaking view of the French Alps. While there, Mecalac dealers and the press were provided with an opportunity to get an up-close look at the MWR machines, as well as to enjoy fine dining, live music and time to speak with Henri Marchetta, chairman and founder of the Mecalac Group, and his son, vice chairman, Alexandre Marchetta.