180,000 sq. ft. Manufacturing Facility Will Produce OptimusZ Mowers and More
We love seeing companies bring back American manufacturing. Greenworks Commercial just expanded its operations with the opening of its “Commercial Center of Excellence for Manufacturing and Engineering” in Morristown, Tennessee. This 180,000-square-foot facility represents the first North American manufacturing center for the company.
Greenworks Commercial invested more than $25 million into the facility. The plan is to focus initially on the manufacture of both commercial and residential lithium-ion battery-powered zero-turn and ride-on lawn mowers. In particular, they have the OptimusZ Commercial electric Zero-turn mower slated for production right in this facility alongside their residential ZT mowers.
Production Capabilities and Capacity
Initially, Greenworks Commercial plans to produce 30,000 ride-on mowers in 2023. By 2025, that number should increase to 80,000 ride-on mowers in addition to batteries and other products.
So what does that mean in terms of jobs? According to Greenworks, the new Morristown manufacturing facility will create over 150 high-tech careers by the end of 2023. Expansion plans raise that number to 550 jobs by the end of 2025.
Two Assembly Lines with AGVs (Automated Guided Vehicles)
The Greenworks Morristown manufacturing facility currently includes two AGV (automated guided vehicle) assembly lines. One line focuses on the OptimusZ while the other handles their consumer zero-turn and lawn tractor products.
Robotic Chassis Welding
The plant includes a fully robotic vehicle chassis welding center. Inside are up to 7 fully-robotic welding stations that you can observe through safety glass. Note the use of Lincoln welders behind those arms!
For the mowing decks, Greenworks Commercial uses another 5 robotic welders.
Laser Cutting, Bending, and Powder-Coating
In addition to robotic welding, the facility uses high-precision tube and sheet metal laser cutting, stamping, and CNC tube-bending equipment for major components. They also have an e-coating (powder-coating) line that should come online later this year.
Final Inspection and Color-Matching
For final inspection, Greenworks has a sophisticated computer and Dyno system for checking the motors and gearing.
They also have a light tunnel for visual inspection of the paint and final components prior to packaging and shipment.
Planned Late-2023 and 2024 Expansion
Beginning later this year and throughout 2024 we can expect to see several exciting developments in store for the Greenworks Morristown Manufacturing Facility and Plant. For one, they plan an exterior bumper and track test facility. With that, we wonder how long it will take to bring UTVs into the mix!
Greenworks also anticipates the completion and implementation of the following:
- Automated assembly lines for their large commercial-grade battery modules and smaller battery packs suitable for use with their commercial handheld and walk-behind products
- Installation of the e-coating workshop and a plastic injection molding center
- Manufacturing of commercial walk-behind mowers
- A parts and service warehouse
By the end of 2023, Greenworks Commercial hopes to see the plant manufacture as many as 100 OptimusZ mowers per day. Additionally, they reported to us that they intend to also begin manufacturing the Greenworks OptimusAI autonomous mower. This fully autonomous, self-driving commercial zero-turn mower is built on the OptimusZ platform. Featuring GPS-RTK navigation alongside live-object avoidance technology, it offers hybrid self-driving and manned-driving modes. In its autonomous mode, the mower has accuracy down to one inch!
We even got a sneak peek at the Greenworks OptimusMC mobile power station trailer, though we don’t have a firm commitment on the details of that manufacturing process just yet.
Morristown as a Technology and Engineering Leadership Hub
The Morristown facility also serves as the home of the North American Center for Advanced Vehicle Engineering. As part of the Greenworks corporate group, it will employ over a dozen mechanical, electrical, and testing engineers by the end of 2023. The engineering team in the U.S. works with the Greenworks Research and Development campus in Changzhou, China as well as its Autonomous and Robotics R&D Center in Jönköping, Sweden.
For more information, visit the Greenworks Commercial website.