End of Week Top 3: Cars, Automation, Racing

Raise your hand if you’ve been in three countries in one day.

I have. Yesterday was a major travel day as our our group went from German to Le Mans, France, which is why I missed a blog. Let’s play catch up.


We traveled by train to Paris and then rented a car to Le Mans, where CLAAS’s tractor production facility is located. If you think you’ve been in a traffic jam, go to downtown Paris at 5pm. Wow! Bikes and motorcycles whiz by, car horns sound like sirens, cars driving every direction ignoring common traffic laws (common to a U.S. driver). It was a mess! We were bumper-to-bumper for the first hour of our trip and finally got out into the country. We took a two lane highway to Le Mans and traveled through several small towns. This country loves their roundabouts. In Lincoln, we have a lot, but nothing like France. We made it safely and it was quite the experience.


Today, we got a tour of the tractor facility for nearly 3.5 hours. I was blown away. Below is an overview of how a tractor is assembled. I have not been to any other production facilities, but I would say that CLAAS takes exceptional pride in their workers, their cleanliness and their product. They can track any piece that is on that tractor to the time and person who assembled it. The factory is immaculate and they have several quality control checks to make sure the customer is getting the best piece of equipment.


I’ve never been much of a race car or car person, but we got to visit the 24 Hours of Le Mans museum and drive a part of the circuit today. That was very impressive. I’ve been told by several people on my team that I need to watch Ford vs Ferrari and that’s an option for a movie on the flight back, which I will be taking up. The museum was incredible. It houses every car that has won the race. This year they are celebrating 100 years, and they are bringing back every car that has won. How cool is that? They also have bicycle, motorcycle and bumper car races. I would do the bumper cars!

We are in Paris for the rest of our stay and will do some sight seeing tomorrow. I will wrap up my trip with a final blog post on Monday when I’m back in the states.

Stay tuned.

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