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National Geographic ChannelNat Geo Wild
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First, travel to the little village of Sant’Agata Bologna, Italy, where the “bad boys” of the sports car pantheon are hand-building the fastest Lamborghini ever – the Murcielago SV. Then head north for the royal treatment at the Rolls-Royce factory in England and see why each ultra-luxurious Phantom takes two months to build. Watch how IKEA’s Billy bookcase – 40 million of which have been sold over three decades – comes to be in a matter of minutes at an IKEA factory in Sweden. Shift gears at the Audi factory in Germany and see why the revolutionary R8 road car is forcing Hollywood to change its endings before racing to visit the birthplace of the iconic Porsche 911. Finally, fly south to Brazil where each New York Super Subway car gets over 2,500 welds before it journeys north to New York for assembly and final inspection.

EPISODE GUIDE

  • Megafactories: Winnebago
    A 400 square-foot movable mansion that can travel at 75mph. Hit the open road in a Winnebago, America's finest home from home.
  • Megafactories: Tanks
    TV GUIDE The Abrams tank is one of the most powerful land weapons systems in the world. It is also rebuilt from the ground up, rather than built new. ULTIMATE FACTORIES brings you to two factories responsible for the Herculean effort of overhauling the 70 ton Abrams, to the proving grounds of Fort Bliss, Texas where the reborn tanks flex their better-than-new muscles and to the dangerous battle zones of Iraq where the tank is seeing action daily. PARAGRAPH The Abrams tank is one of the most powerful land weapons systems in the world. It is also rebuilt from the ground up, rather than built new. ULTIMATE FACTORIES brings you to two of the factories that are responsible for the Herculean effort of overhauling the 70-ton Abrams, the Anniston Army Depot in Alabama, and the Lima Army Tank Plant in Lima, Ohio. In these two facilities, decades-old Abrams tanks are completely disassembled, cleaned, refurbished, and upgraded and then rebuilt from the ground up to return to the proving grounds at Fort Bliss, Texas in zero-miles condition.
  • Megafactories: Eurofighter
    Eurofighter Typhoon is the world's best multi role fighter jet. It's capable of reaching speeds of 2000 kilometers per hour, pulls up to 0 Gs, and it's built to kill. But constructing it piece by piece in 3 different factories across 3 different countries is a mega challenge that only the world's best engineers can overcome. We'll explore how this army of engineers constructs the Typhoon.
  • Megafactories: Rolls Royce
    The Phantom is the first Rolls-Royce motorcar to be introduced since the company was acquired by BMW in 1998. Each Phantom is a unique combination of state-of-the-art technology and old-world craftsmanship, constructed with meticulous attention to detail. Manufacture of the Phantom begins in Unterhallerau, Germany, where its strong, stiff and lightweight space frame chassis is built. Each space frame and body shell assembly is then sent to BMWs factory in Dingolfing, Germany for corrosion-resistance treatment and primer paint. Next, each Phantom is shipped to a manufacturing facility constructed by BMW specifically to build the new generation of Rolls-Royce motorcars. It takes an average of 450 hours and the skills of hundreds of dedicated craftspeople, artisans, designers, engineers, mechanics, painters, sewing machinists and others to hand-build each car. At a base price of $380,000, the Phantom comes equipped with an impressive list of standard amenities including 90 square yards (75 sq meters) of A-grade Bavarian leather upholstery and "book matched" interior wood trim, hand-crafted from exotic veneers, all of which are fashioned right in the main assembly building of the Goodwood plant. With the Rolls-Royce customization, or "bespoke" program, however, the options are limited only by the boundaries of the buyers bankroll and imagination.
  • Megafactories: Maserati
    The Maserati Gran Turismo Convertible is a $135,800 four-seat convertible inspired by the racetrack but refined by one of the most luxurious Italian supercar manufacturers in the world… A company defined by a three-pointed trident but determined to build machines that soothe the soul in elegance… And it's born at the Maserati Ultimate Factory in Modena, Italy.
  • Megafactories: Mercedes
    Few cars ever become automotive icons. Fewer still achieve eternal fame. The Mercedes Benz 1954 300SL Gullwing has done both. And now it is being reborn…as the all new 2010 Mercedes Benz AMG SLS. This Ultimate Factories will showcase two of the most storied brands in the automotive worldthe Maserati and Mercedes-- each producing a unique version of the latest in supercars. The Maserati, offering an unusual blend of luxury and performance at an affordable price and the Mercedes Benz, a car that has become not only an automotive icons, but has achieved eternal fame.
  • Megafactories: Ducati
    Tonight we go inside the renowned Italian Ducati motorbike factory and with exclusive access to all areas go behind the scenes to see how Italian designers and engineers built the most sophisticated and technologically advanced motorbike to ever come out of the factory - the Multistrada 1200. The rapid advancement of electronic technology and years of testing on the race track has allowed Ducati designers and engineers to create four bikes in one machine. We learn how engine designers and electronic engineers were able to build a bike which can be transformed from a racing machine to a tourer and an off road bike to a commuter bike all with just a click of a button. One bike designed for all types of roads.
  • Megafactories: Super Chopper
    The hand built AW139 is a state-of-the-art medium class helicopter made near Milan, Italy at the AgustaWestland Factory. Today the plant is thriving but 20 years ago it was struggling to survive. The Berlin Wall had fallen and military orders that had kept the company afloat had dried up. The decision was made to create a new generation of helicopter for the 21st Century: more powerful, faster and more technologically advanced than any before it. Meet the craftsmen who make this 12 million Euro machine a marvel of aviation.
  • Megafactories: Porsche Panamera
    A rare behind-the-scenes look at how Porsche builds the 'Panamera', the company's first four door high performance sports sedan. The Porsche Panamera is pushing the company into uncharted territory. It is the first 4 door, 4 passenger sports sedan Porsche has ever built. Building it is a risk for the company but a risk that appears to be paying off. In April 2010, the Panamera became the best selling Porsche model in the United States.
  • Megafactories: Lotus Evora
    In this episode we take the viewer on a fascinating journey into one of the UK's most consistently cutting edge and influential manufacturers of high-performance sports cars: LOTUS. Megafactories is invited inside their facilities in rural Norfolk to see how Dany Bahar - the charismatic new CEO - is implementing an exciting new regime to bring Lotus back to the top of the sports car rankings. We meet Dany Bahar and his new European management team - recruited from big-name companies such as Porsche and Ferrari - who are quickly turning Lotus around. New production methods are giving technicians more responsibility and more contact time with the cars. We see a company keen to produce hand-made, high performance vehicles without the need for automation. The latest model being produced at Lotus is the Lotus Evora, a car so elegantly designed that even when standing still it communicates speed and athleticism. Capable of sprinting from 0-60 in under 5 seconds, it was described by motoring journalists as a 'killer attack dog'.
  • Megafactories: Williams F1
    Megafactories is granted unprecedented access to elite Formula One team Williams F1. Back from their latest race in Europe, the team have a week to get the car in shape at their English HQ before they leave for months away on the other side of the globe. They must improve the aerodynamics and completely repair and rebuild the car at their state-of-the-art facility before they fly away. Cutting edge design and incredible technology need to come together as team race for success.
  • Megafactories: Williams F1
    Megafactories is granted unprecedented access to elite Formula One team Williams F1. Back from their latest race in Europe, the team have a week to get the car in shape at their English HQ before they leave for months away on the other side of the globe. They must improve the aerodynamics and completely repair and rebuild the car at their state-of-the-art facility before they fly away. Cutting edge design and incredible technology need to come together as team race for success.
  • Megafactories: Extreme Rollercoaster
    This 60 metres high thrill ride is only the 5th ever to be constructed. Its adrenaline fuelled tracks speed riders to 100 kph over loops, drops and banks, pushing them to g force limits usually reserved for fighter pilots. Building this mighty machine takes an army of engineers, designers and master technicians. Find out how one of the world's greatest roller coaster factories creates the world's scariest rides.
  • Megafactories: Mini
    Mega Factories Mini Cooper is a unique insight into the construction of Mini's brand new derivative. The Mini Coupe is the Oxford plants first ever two seater sports vehicle. Follow the journey of the Mini Coupe as it makes it way through this state of the art factory based in the heart of England.
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PHOTOS

  • Audi photo

    Audi

    Meet the famous car manufacturer and watch an elegant sedan transform into an amazing sports car.

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VIDEOS

  • Speed and Luxury photo

    Speed and Luxury

    The R8 is a road car modeled after a champion racecar but there has been no compromise on comfort.

    (03:00)
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