Built to last, designed to deliver
Tomcar Australia is using Solid Edge® software from product lifecycle management (PLM) specialist Siemens PLM Software to help it produce tough all-terrain vehicles (ATVs) that compete against the products of larger players in the market.
The automotive industry in Australia is largely legacy-based and comprised of big players competing both locally and globally to design and manufacture products to meet growing market demand. In a country known for the design and production of large-sized passenger vehicles, being a mid-sized player comes with challenges.
Tomcar Australia produces an innovative and unique ATV that separates it from any other vehicle on the market today. Originally built for military purposes, today’s Tomcar has gone beyond the battlefield and into the mining, agricultural and farming sectors across Australia. Use of an ATV such as the Tomcar for civilian tasks is on the upswing.
Established in 2005, Tomcar Australia recently began manufacturing the Tomcar vehicles at its facility in Melbourne, Australia, supplying ATVs through online sales and agency networks, not only across Australia, but also throughout Oceania including New Zealand, Indonesia, Pacific Islands, Papua New Guinea and the Philippines. Since its establishment, it has been clear that using advanced technology is the way for the company to breakthrough and most effectively compete in an already highly established automotive market. Other factors that are essential to surviving and thriving in such a competitive market include minimizing costs and maximizing service.
“We plan to produce 5,000 units yearly,” says say David Brim, CEO (chief executive officer) and co-founder of Tomcar Australia. “To keep up with demand, we have to be sure that the process from start to finish is accurate and efficient every single time. Being a mid-sized company that caters to a specific niche, we do not have the resources that large manufacturers have. So we need to rely on what we consider ‘Grade A’ technology to ensure detailed accuracy in every part we design. From high-grade materials to advanced software, we only use the best, so that we can compete successfully in today’s marketplace.”
The use of Siemens PLM Software technology has helped the company save substantial amounts – more than $150,000 per year. “Current auto market dynamics require companies to think about smarter and more cost-effective ways to design and manufacture,” says Brim. “One of the many reasons we are successful is because we have saved approximately $150,000 annually using Solid Edge.”
Brim notes, “We recognize that to have a thriving business, we need to use products and technology that give us consistent, high-quality results without exception. Our engineers chose Siemens PLM Software as our technology provider, because Siemens met this requirement.” Brim is also quite pleased with the services of Edge PLM, Siemens PLM Software’s distribution partner.
The right tools
To prosper in the highly competitive automotive environment, it is essential for Australian manufacturers to develop products as efficiently as possible and use fewer resources and less time while delivering maximum results. “To make sure our team has the competency that large manufacturers have, it was crucial to equip them with the right tools from design and geometric development to simulation and manufacturing,” says Brim.
With the aid of advanced computer-aided design (CAD) technology from Siemens PLM Software, high-quality materials and some of the best engineers in the country, Tomcar Australia met its goal of breaking through the clutter, and competing effectively. Using Solid Edge enables Tomcar Australia to notably accelerate its design process, make faster revisions and substantially improve data re-use. Moreover, Solid Edge has enabled Tomcar Australia to operate like a large manufacturer, while maintaining its mid-sized business model.
Precision that enables “bending rather than breaking”
In designing outstanding ATVs, it is essential to consider motion and speed. ATVs need to be able to effectively slow down and make aggressive turns, especially on difficult terrain, in order to avoid potentially severe damage. The use of Solid Edge helped the Tomcar achieve the required specifications.
“Using Solid Edge and making a few engineering adjustments have enabled us to design the vehicle with a light front end, and suspension mounts that bend rather than break under excessive impact,” says Brim. “This gives the Tomcar excellent traction even in the harshest conditions.”
All of the design and development of the Tomcar ATVs is done using Solid Edge. Brim notes that being a mid-sized business means that Tomcar Australia does not possess the luxury of abundant resources. To ensure time and materials are used efficiently, it is important to limit trial-and-error, and be as efficient as possible during design and manufacturing. To deliver high-quality, high-performance vehicles, it is crucial to use the right software for design, so that accuracy is maintained throughout the process at all times. “Solid Edge was a natural choice for our engineers,” says Brim. “We use Solid Edge from sketching to modeling and the built-in finite element analysis (FEA) for simulation. It certainly helped us save on resources and time.”presses us.”