Höchste Qualität im Kühltransport.
Das Familienunternehmen Winter Fahrzeugtechnik GmbH aus Hessen im Portrait.
Robust quality from Munich – with long-standing traditions as a Mercedes-Benz VanSolution partner.
Back in 1850 Meiller was a forge on the outskirts of Munich. Much has changed since then. It all began in 1907, when Franz Xaver Meiller installed a rack-and-pinion jack which he had hammer-forged in a trailer. "That was the invention of the tipper - the Meiller tipper. Basically, our company evolved from this small but brilliant idea", notes Franz X. Meiller - the fifth to bear this name.Today, Meiller is an internationally operative family-run company and a market leader as a systems supplier in the commercial vehicles industry for sectors such as "Construction" and "Municipal and Public Services".Meiller also has a long tradition of working together with Mercedes-Benz.
The first hydraulic three-way tipper was mounted on a Mercedes-Benz and sold as a complete solution back in 1927. The partnership continues to this day and continues to evolve. "Essentially, we are Mercedes-Benz's tool to turn a Sprinter into a tipper," observes Franz X. Meiller of the partnership between Meiller and Mercedes-Benz. "The perfect tipper must be the perfect match for the vehicle. And that's what works so brilliantly between us and Mercedes-Benz."
From the initial design sketch - CAD today - Meiller works closely together with Mercedes-Benz, developing the appropriate tipper in parallel with the development of the new Sprinter. "We work hand-in-hand with Mercedes-Benz Vans to deliver a perfectly coordinated end product to the customer.We call this Mercedes-Benz VanSolution," explains Thomas von Gehlen, OEM Account Manager at Meiller and responsible for cooperation with Mercedes-Benz Vans. Meiller's USP is thatit serves as a single source for steel construction, hydraulics and control technology. This set-up enables the company to react quickly, to offer high quality and to deliver the full scope of perfectly matched components to Mercedes-Benz.
Our VanSolution offers the added value of a complete solution for the customer.
Meiller and Mercedes-Benz form a strong team to address the growing requirements in the industry. In addition to both being strong brands, they also share a common outlook. "What unites us is a common philosophy with regard to continuity as well as social and ecological responsibility – Mercedes-Benz sets an example here and we endeavour to follow suit in our relationship." The issue of quality also plays a key role. "We are a premium manufacturer, and in order to remain so we need to produce tippers that are durable. Studies confirm that Meiller tippers have a service life in excess of 15 years."
The Mercedes-Benz VanSolution from Meiller is the three-way tipper based on the Sprinter. From initial planning through to the "marriage" when the three-way tipper is mounted on the chassis, the tipper passes through various production stages.
The structural steel components are produced in Slaný, Czech Republic. The steel is cut using a laser and subsequently trimmed, welded and sand-blasted. After applying a base coat, the steel structure is transported to the Karlsruhe plant.
The hydraulics – the core of the tipper – are produced in parallel in Munich.The entire hydraulics system is produced at the same plant, ensuring the highest quality standards. "The cylinder guides are all-metal with no inlays, making them virtually maintenance-free.This is absolutely unique on the market. The second special feature of the Meiller hydraulics is that the cylinder units are hardened and protected from corrosion by means of a thermo-chemical process known as gas carbonitriding," explains Thomas von Gehlen.
The hydraulic system is a Meiller hallmark.Developed in-house, it is subject to ongoing improvement in close consultation between the design, product management and sales areas.
The Mercedes-Benz connection is also evident in the hydraulics: "The hydraulic system is the tippers "motor" and is a quality feature developed by Meiller. But it is ultimately the engine from Mercedes-Benz which drives the hydraulics. It's all interwoven," notes Franz X. Meiller.The production process culminates in the "marriage".
When the Meiller tipper is mounted on the Mercedes-Benz Sprinter, we refer to this as the "marriage". These two were just made for each other.
The corporate culture is close to Franz X. Meiller's heart. Like his father before him, he is intent on being a role model for his employees and guaranteeing them continuity and security. The fruits of this approach are much in evidence: "It's quite common for people to be working at our company in the second and third generation," notes the managing partner.
Franz X. Meiller himself was born into the company and came into contact with Mercedes-Benz at an early age."I well remember my father taking me along to trade fairs while I was still at school and before embarking on my studies. I had the pleasure of explaining the finer points of Bavarian cuisine to major customers - including members of the Mercedes-Benz board of management.I didn't actually know a great deal more at the time." This was all set to change. After several stints of work experience followed by his studies, Franz X. Meiller took up his vocation and set up the marketing department at Meiller. He also oversaw the handover from the fourth to the fifth generation at the helm of the company.
The family set-up, the team spirit and the pleasure I derive from my work – these are the values that forge a particularly strong bond between myself and the Meiller company.
The company's recipe for success boils down to a small number of ingredients: the continuity and reliability of a family-run company, the pronounced sense of responsibility – towards its employees and society as a whole – its enduring innovative drive and the zest with which it goes about its daily work. "Live and let live" has been the motto informing the corporate culture at Meiller over the generations.This provides a sound foundation for a continuing dependable partnership between Meiller and Mercedes-Benz over the coming decades and generations.