Local automotive giant ATL Automotive Limited today signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Panasonic Latin America for the solar energy transformation of the Audi Terminal and Volkswagen Showroom on Oxford Road.
The announcement was made at a tour of the ATL Eco Store in the Manor Park Plaza. ATL Automotive’s CEO Adam Stewart outlined that the project is estimated to cost over J$25,000,000.
“We opened the two most sophisticated automotive showrooms in the Caribbean earlier this year at a cost of US$13 million. Anyone who has seen inside either Audi or Volkswagen would have seen the extensive lighting required in each and could also imagine the electricity cost that comes with that level of lighting. With the continued increase in fuel costs worldwide, a solar transformation at this time is our best option as it will drastically reduce our electricity consumption, thus saving us some money,” Mr Stewart explained.
Panasonic will install a 58.8Kw on grid system at the Oxford Road premises. This will supply approximately 30 percent of the power consumption and use an estimated area of 500m2. Panasonic STD module 245W panels with an efficiency of 14.8 percent and an output warranty of 25 years will be utilized.
“We have enjoyed a long standing partnership with Panasonic so we are confident in that we are receiving world class service from a company with more than 35 years’ experience in solar technology,” the CEO noted.
Work is expected to begin on the project in just a few weeks with completion estimated between a three and four week period.
According to Mr Stewart, this is the largest automotive investment by any local company. “We brought these brands to Jamaica based on a firm belief that the people of this country deserved better. Audi and VW have a goal to dominate the automotive industry worldwide by 2018 and this little country is contributing to that historic achievement in a big way. The feedback has been tremendous since we opened.,” Mr Stewart said.
To some on-lookers, the best view of the new showroom is at night when the lights on the German designed building illuminate Oxford Road into a never before seen spectacle.