Bosch opens new electronic plant in Changzhou, China

Bosch opens new electronic plant in Changzhou, China

Until 2019: Bosch will invest over €100 million.

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The Bosch Group continues its strong investment in China: the technology and service company opened a new plant for electronic components in the southeastern Chinese city of Changzhou. "With another production site for Bosch Automotive Electronics in China we are strengthening our successful localisation strategy and underlining Bosch's confidence in the Chinese market", said Klaus Meder, president of Bosch Automotive Electronics. By 2019, Bosch will have invested over 100 million euros (800 million CNY) in the new site where it plans to employ 1,300 new associates. "With the new electronic plant we are also reacting to the growing local demand for connected products and solutions", Meder continued. According to a current study, connected driver assistance systems could for example prevent an annual total number of about 20,000 accidents that result in injuries in China.

Production for the connected and automated future

The new facility will mainly focus on the manufacturing of electronic components for automated driving and connected products. These include cameras and radar sensors for driver assistance systems, Electronic Control Units (ECU) for automotive steering systems as well as Central Gateways for connected vehicels. Located in the Wujin Economic Development Zone in Changzhou with a size of 34,000 square meters, the plant is producing mainly for the Chinese market. By 2019, around 41 million electronic control units are scheduled to roll off the assembly line each year. Since 2006 the business unit Automotive Electronics is already running a production plant in Suzhou. In total, the Bosch group has over 60 sites in the people's republic.

Bosch lead plant for Industry 4.0 in China

In the new plant, Bosch is planning to combine its well-established Bosch Production System (BPS) for standardised lean processes with connected manufacturing. "We are investing in Industry 4.0 to meet the ever diversified market demands in a more agile and faster way", said Meder. A total number of 14 Bosch plants in China is already equipped with connected technologies. The company is leading user and leading provider of Industry 4.0. In China, Bosch is also cooperating with the Development Research Center (DRC) of the Chinese State Council and is contributing to promote connected manufacturing in the country.

Apollo Tyres opens new Hungarian factory

Apollo Tyres opens new Hungarian factory

Hungarian plant is Apollo’s sixth, worldwide facility.

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Global tyre manufacturer Apollo Tyres has announced another milestone in its European development strategy, by opening its sixth tyre manufacturing unit, which is Apollo's second one in Europe.

Apollo Tyres' new factory opening in Hungary is the strongest indicator, so far, of the company's soon-to-be-revealed plans to launch its Truck and Bus Radial Tyre (TBR) range in Europe, spearheaded by Apollo's presence at the forthcoming Commercial Vehicle Show this month, in Birmingham, UK.

The Honourable Prime Minister of Hungary, Viktor Orbán, formally opened Apollo Tyres' latest manufacturing unit.

Located less than 100 km from the Hungarian capital, the new factory is Apollo Tyres' first greenfield facility outside India. The momentous occasion reflects the company's growth aspirations and manufacturing capabilities, showcasing some of the best practices in tyre manufacturing with a highly automated plant, the use of fully-integrated systems and robotics, and employing young and skilled associates on the shop floor, mostly hired locally.

Speaking on the occasion Onkar S Kanwar, Chairman, Apollo Tyres said: "With this inauguration today, of our Hungary greenfield facility, we have crossed another milestone in our global growth journey. This facility will help us further increase our presence and market share in Europe. From being a replacement- market- focused company in Europe, we would soon be starting supplies of our tyres to all the leading OEs in Europe."

Construction of the plant began in April 2015, and the facility covers over 72 hectares. The company is investing €475 million in the project; at the end of Phase I the plant's final capacity will be 5.5 million passenger car and light truck (PCLT) tyres along with 675,000 commercial vehicle tyres. The new factory complements Apollo Tyres' existing manufacturing plant in the Netherlands, and will produce both Apollo and Vredestein brand tyres for the European market.

HELLA builds new electronics plant in Lithuania

HELLA builds new electronics plant in Lithuania

Automotive supplier expands production capacities in Europe due to increasing demand for electronic components.

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HELLA, one of the globally leading automotive suppliers for lighting and electronics, plans to open a new plant for electronics components in Lithuania. The decision in favor of the Lithuanian region Kaunas is currently in its final stages. The opening of the new electronics plant is anticipated for mid-2018. The investment volume for the first phase accounts for approximately up to €30 million.

"Electronics is a fundamental cornerstone of our strategy," said Dr Rolf Breidenbach, CEO of HELLA. "Especially in the light of the major industry trends of autonomous driving, electrification and digitalization, we're anticipating increasing demand for our innovative electronics components. Therefore, the new production site in Lithuania is an important building block to continue the successful development of our electronics business."

The Kaunas region in Lithuania is a traditional industrial region and boasts good infrastructure and a business-friendly environment with a highly qualified workforce. With a production surface of initially 7000 square meters, the new HELLA location in Lithuania will mainly produce sensors, actuators and control modules for the automotive industry. The number of employees will be approximately up to 250 in the first step.

Elio Motors signs agreement with AISIN Group

Elio Motors signs agreement with AISIN Group

Global tier one supplier selected to provide transmissions to Elio Motors.

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Elio Motors, the startup vehicle manufacturer planning to launch a three-wheeled vehicle that will get up to 84 mpg with a targeted base price of $7,450, has announced that AISIN Group will be selected to supply transmissions for the Elio.

AISIN Group is the sixth largest tier one automotive supplier in the world and the largest manufacturer of transmissions.

"The AISIN transmissions will play a key role in meeting several of our goals, including cost, fuel efficiency, and performance," said Paul Elio, founder and CEO of Elio Motors. "In addition, having AISIN as part of our world-class team underscores Elio Motors' ability to attract leading suppliers to move this project forward. Cementing our relationship with AISIN is another major milestone in our development."

"The Elio engineering team searched long and hard for the perfect fit to our IAV/Elio engine," said Jeff Johnston VP of Engineering, Elio Motors, "We needed both the best quality and performance fit for our system, and a partner that could meet our anticipated demand and AISIN fits those criteria well." He added, "AISIN's production capabilities and engineering expertise will have long-term benefits to Elio Motors and its customers."

Adient receives Supplier Award from Toyota

Adient receives Supplier Award from Toyota

Seating supplier recognised for Diversity Excellence.

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Adient, the global leader in automotive seating, was recognised recently with a Supplier Diversity Excellence award from Toyota Motor North America (TMNA) at its annual Supplier Business Meeting in March. Held in Detroit, the meeting brings together approximately 850 supplier representatives from across North America.

"We're honoured to be recognised by Toyota Motor for our efforts in supplier diversity," said David Shuart, Vice President of Asia Customers at Adient. "All of us at Adient recognise the significance of this award and we believe this further demonstrates our commitment to providing excellent products and customer satisfaction."

Celebrating 21 years, the Supplier Business Meeting allows TMNA to discuss business objectives with direct and indirect suppliers in preparation for its upcoming fiscal year. Each year, TMNA recognises suppliers who exceeded the company's expectations in several categories.

"Toyota collaborates with each of our supplier partners in order to build vehicles with the high safety, quality and reliability standards to meet and exceed our customer's expectation," said Robert Young, Group Vice President, TMNA R&D Purchasing and Supplier Engineering Development. "We are pleased to recognise those in our supply base who exceed our high performance targets. We thank them and their team members for their tremendous support, partnership and commitment to continuous improvement and collaboration to build 'ever better cars' in North America."

Nexteer and Dongfeng Components sign joint venture agreement

Nexteer and Dongfeng Components sign joint venture agreement

Joint venture to serve as provider of electric power steering systems to Dongfeng Group passenger vehicles.

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Nexteer Automotive, a global leader in intuitive motion control, has signed an agreement to form a joint venture with Dongfeng Motor Parts and Components Group. The joint venture, equally owned by both parties, will design and manufacture electric power steering (EPS) systems for Dongfeng Motor Group Company and its affiliated companies.

"The formation of a joint venture between Nexteer and Dongfeng Components signifies an expanded relationship in which both companies will greatly benefit," said Tao Liu, Senior Vice President and Global Chief Operating Officer, Nexteer Automotive. "By providing our advanced steering technologies specifically tailored to the needs of our customers like Dongfeng, we continue to increase our presence in the growing Chinese market which is a core component of Nexteer's strategy for profitable growth."

Nexteer's business in the Asia-Pacific region now accounts for 24% of the company's total revenue, nearly doubling in the past three years. In 2016, Nexteer launched 21 new major customer programmes in the region and has since been expanding manufacturing capabilities to meet demand. Nexteer currently provides EPS for several Dongfeng affiliated vehicles, including the Peugeot 2008 crossover. Pending regulatory approval, the joint venture will become a strategic in-house producer of passenger vehicle EPS within the Dongfeng Group.

"We continue to seek strategic alliances with OEMs and other business partners," said Mike Richardson, President and Executive Board Member, Nexteer Automotive. "The opportunity to join Dongfeng Components in a unique role of JV partner and producer of EPS for future vehicle platforms further expands our presence in the Asia-Pacific region and contributes to our overall revenue growth objectives."

After clearing regulatory approvals, the joint venture facility will be strategically located in close proximity to the Dongfeng Group headquarters in Wuhan, China.

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