BORN, Netherlands - Nedcar's development engineers have stopped soliciting outside work to concentrate on Volvo and Mistubishi projects.
The head of the product development and engineering department presented this as a positive development, despite past efforts to secure outside contracts.
'We are very busy fulfilling our commitments to our shareholders, so we cannot take any engineering work from customers other than NedCar,' said Aard van Oosten Slingeland, the department's recently appointed managing director. 'Every one of our activities is scrutinized.'
In the past, the department has spent as much as 15 percent of its time on contract development for other automakers. The department's 1996 sales were DM72 million ($43 million). NedCar will continue to rent out test facilities.
At the Geneva auto show two years ago, the department showed a car it had developed on its own, in order to attract attention from other automakers.
NedCar Product Development and Engineering has 320 staff employees plus 150 part-time specialists. According to NedCar principles, all development efforts are equally split between the two carmakers, although at the moment activities are concentrated on Volvo products.