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  • J.F. MUSIAL: Welcome to Angelholm, Sweden, about an

  • hour north of Copenhagen, and like most European cities,

  • it's beautiful, both the scenery and the people.

  • Sweden has had a great legacy of innovation design and

  • engineering, especially in aerospace and automotive.

  • Think of Volvo.

  • Think of Saab.

  • But what if you mixed the two, aerospace and automotive?

  • CHRISTIAN VON KOENIGSEGG: I had a lifelong dream to start

  • my car company and build cars.

  • It started when I was five years old.

  • I mean, I got the question, always, why do

  • you have this dream?

  • And I couldn't really answer.

  • I didn't really know.

  • And then I started thinking.

  • I said, when I was five years, I saw this Norwegian animated

  • stop motion movie about a bicycle repairman who built a

  • fantastic racing car up on a mountaintop in Norway, and

  • took it to LeMans and won over the establishment.

  • And I was so fascinated by this movie, I remember, when I

  • walked out of the movies, that I said to myself, that's what

  • I want to do when I grow up.

  • And when you're like five years old, you don't really

  • think about--

  • fiction or reality.

  • It's kind of intertwined.

  • And you're really impressionable.

  • So I think that was what was the triggering me to do this

  • and it's just stuck with me.

  • I was kind of pre-programmed to do this from that day on.

  • When I started the company, I was only 22.

  • J.F. MUSIAL: Is that so?

  • CHRISTIAN VON KOENIGSEGG: So I've always had a keen

  • interest for engineering, technical things and worked

  • with cars and mopeds and boats and electronical things.

  • But I never really started it officially.

  • So we have, of course, a bunch of engineers here that are

  • trained engineers, but I'm kind of more like an inventor

  • or something like that.

  • So this is our development room for all the carbon fiber

  • parts that we use in our cars, so we have all the technology,

  • all the carbon fiber technology

  • proprietary to our company.

  • We started developing carbon fiber parts back in 1996 for

  • the first time.

  • So we have quite a vast experience of special

  • manufacturing carbon fiber parts for cars.

  • What you can see here is the material that is the visible

  • part of the carbon.

  • It's kind of a twill weave.

  • And there are different types of carbon fiber.

  • There are uni-directional, different weaves, different

  • directions depending on the need, the

  • stiffness, the strength.

  • We always want to optimize to keep the weight down and the

  • costs down of the carbon fiber and to make the car as light

  • as possible.

  • So the tools, I would say are either made out of--

  • the tools are large.

  • They're made out of carbon fiber to make them not too

  • cumbersome and heavy to deal with.

  • And they have exactly the same heat expansion as the part

  • itself, so there needs to be no

  • compensation for thermal expansion.

  • But smaller parts we machine most of the time straight out

  • of a billet aluminum.

  • So here, for example, we have a lamp clusters.

  • We have turbo tubing.

  • Here we have a tool for intake plenum.

  • So, then we have a lot of turbo tubes made up here.

  • So what you're seeing here is a vacuum bagging

  • process, where we--

  • we only use the most extreme type of carbon fiber material

  • which is called the pre-preg from Advanced Composite Group

  • in England.

  • And it's the same material you make--

  • well again, fighter jets or Indy cars, or F1 cars out of.

  • In our carbon fiber monocoque, we actually have aluminum

  • honeycomb inside.

  • And this is very unusual for a road car.

  • I think, well, let's say most Formula One carbon tops, they

  • use aluminum honeycomb.

  • The advantage of aluminum honeycomb, compared to other

  • types of core structures or other types of honeycomb

  • materials, is that it's very crash absorbent and it holds

  • the pieces together very well in an accident situation.

  • But the negative side is it's very expensive to work with

  • and takes a long time to implement.

  • And as far as I'm aware, we're the only road car manufacturer

  • with a carbon fiber monocoque that actually use aluminum

  • honeycomb in the monocoque.

  • So it makes it basically safer, extremely strong.

  • But it takes more time and more cost.

  • But I think, in a car like this, that's acceptable.

  • If you look at these two pieces, they almost have the

  • same stiffness, but this has the core inside.

  • And this is just solid carbon.

  • So it saves a lot of weight.

  • You maintain the stiffness, but of course, you reduce some

  • of this strength due to that it's less carbon.

  • But still, it's massively stronger than anything else of

  • the same size, shape and weight.

  • So what we're seeing here is what we call Station 2.

  • By this time, we've made all the carbon fiber bits and

  • pieces and received them from our suppliers.

  • And then we put them on this fixture and pre-fit everything

  • prior to paint, and make sure everything aligns perfectly.

  • And if there are any specific customer demands to the body

  • work, we adjust it here and custom fabricate parts, if

  • there's a need for that.

  • And then we take it all apart and send it to the paint shop.

  • J.F. MUSIAL: Is everything painted here?

  • CHRISTIAN VON KOENIGSEGG: Everything is painted here.

  • I jokingly say that when people ask how much can you

  • customize, and I say, well, if you pay us enough, we can

  • build you a helicopter.

  • J.F. MUSIAL: So I must ask.

  • How old are you?

  • ROBERT BERWANSKI: I'm 24.

  • J.F. MUSIAL: 24 years old and you're the test driver for

  • Koenigsegg.

  • You must love it.

  • ROBERT BERWANSKI: I love it.

  • I seriously do.

  • J.F. MUSIAL: So this is my first time in a Koenigsegg.

  • Let's see how it does.

  • ROBERT BERWANSKI: Yeah, I can show you how it runs.

  • That's the interesting bit.

  • J.F. MUSIAL: Let's see how it goes.

  • And I love the fact that you have your own private runway

  • to do whatever you want.

  • ROBERT BERWANSKI: We need that.

  • J.F. MUSIAL: So what do we [INAUDIBLE]?

  • That's 100 kilometers an hour, right there.

  • In seventh gear, so it's a seven-speed gear box.

  • ROBERT BERWANSKI: And now we're on 1,600 revs.

  • J.F. MUSIAL: Got it.

  • ROBERT BERWANSKI: So actually, on the highway, it's quite

  • economic for the car it is.

  • But you don't usually do that.

  • Here you have 1,200 horsepower.

  • CHRISTIAN VON KOENIGSEGG: So then we take the parts into

  • our paint department.

  • You can actually see them spraying it.

  • J.F. MUSIAL: And is any color possible?

  • CHRISTIAN VON KOENIGSEGG: Any color is pretty

  • much possible, yes.

  • We have our own mixing room.

  • We, actually, even come up with our own paint mixtures.

  • We're very proud of our paint result because we put a lot of

  • effort into it.

  • Let's say that the thickness of the clear coat is about

  • three, four times that of a normal production car.

  • That adds a little bit of weight, but it also means you

  • get a fantastic gloss and the ability to polish for a long

  • time and polish out scratches and stuff like that.

  • And you get this very deep sensation when

  • you look at the car.

  • And there's a lot of specialist polishing companies

  • around the world that work with all these hypercars and

  • many of them tell us that they really like to work on our

  • cars because they're really the top.

  • What I noted was that people close the door like this and

  • then they want to walk away.

  • They didn't want to push it down and then push it in.

  • Because a 2-step motion is not natural.

  • J.F. MUSIAL: Especially for a door.

  • CHRISTIAN VON KOENIGSEGG: You're not used to that.

  • People are used to slamming the door and going.

  • And here you have to push it down and then push it in.

  • So I said, there must be a way that can

  • be done in one motion.