GKN has announced a series of expansions in China, a country expected to produce 15 million vehicles in 2014 and 20 million by 2020.
GKN’s growth in China includes a new GKN Driveline forging plant in Wuhan, a GKN Sinter Metals facility in Yizheng, a new joint-venture for GKN Land Systems in Donhai and the expansion of manufacturing plants in Changchun and Shenjian.
Scheduled for completion in July, GKN Driveline’s new 11,000-square-metre precision forge in Wuhan will employ 200 people and produce components for CVJ Systems. The expansion, driven by customer demand, will mean more capacity and capability to support increasing demand from the vehicle manufacturers.
The new facility will allow GKN Driveline to increase annual automotive sideshaft production in China by two million units, from 8.5 million up to 10.5 million.
Responding to an increase in demand for SUVs in China GKN Driveline also is expanding propshaft production at its Shenjian plant.
Production capacity for the company’s CVJ (constant velocity joint) systems is expected to grow by 40% over the next five years and AWD (all-wheel-drive) systems in China by 130%.
GKN Sinter Metals is to open a new 15,000-square-metre plant in Yizheng. It will employ 500 people with the capacity to annually produce 100 million precision parts for automotive engine, transmission, body and chassis applications, as well for power tools and a variety of other consumer and industrial applications. A new product and process development centre will be located at the Yizheng production site as well.
GKN Wheels, part of GKN Land Systems, recently signed an agreement with its Chinese partner − Lianyungang Huading Wheels − to form a joint venture in Donghai, near the city of Lianyungang, Jiangsu Province. Production of wheels for farm machinery and tractors will begin in May. The joint venture will employ 150 people and is expected to produce more than 650,000 wheels a year.