Following record-setting sales results, General Motors, in partnership with SAIC, Shanghai GM, and the Pan Asia Technical Automotive Center (PATAC) has opened the Guangde Proving Ground — the largest proving ground in China. The facility occupies 5.67 square kilometers (2.18 square miles) in Guangde County, Anhui, features 67 driving conditions over 60 km (37 miles) of test roads, and will support the design and development of vehicles by Shanghai GM and PATAC. The facility is the culmination of RMB 1.6 billion ($253 million) investment.
The proving ground, whose operations will be overseen by Shanghai GM and PATAC, is capable of performing development, validation, certification, quality control evaluation, load data collection and analysis work on vehicles weighing less than 7.5 ton. It is expected to conduct 20 million km (12.4 million miles) of testing a year.
In addition, the proving ground contains eight specific test areas, including an oval track, a vehicle dynamics test area, a long straightaway, a ride and handling loop, a noise test road, a durability test area, a corrosion test area, as well as a hill test area. There is also 23,000 square meters (247,569 square feet) of auxiliary space for labs, repair facilities, and private workshops.
“Our goal from the beginning was to make this a world-class facility. The greatest beneficiary will be our customers, who will receive even higher-quality vehicles that are equal to those built and sold anywhere else in the world,” said Kevin Wale, president, GM China, and chief country operations officer, China, India and ASEAN.
Indeed, the purpose of the Guangde proving ground is to improve testing efficiency, shorten product development time, and reduce testing costs. The facility will serve complementary to PATAC’s facilities in Shanghai, which consist of a Noise, Vibration and Harshness (NVH) Lab, Vehicle Safety Lab, Envision Visualization Center and Climate Wind Tunnel.