Continental Opens New Manufacturing Plant for Hydraulic Brake Systems in Changshu, China

Jul 8, 2008

  • Calipers and actuation units for the whole marketin Asia
  • Continental’s first worldwide plant covering the complete range of HBS products
  • Continental is number 1 in the global hydraulic brake systems market
  • Create strong footprint inChinaand 1,000 local new jobs

Frankfurt am Main, Germany / Changshu, China. The international automotive supplier Continental AG has opened a newly built production plant for the HBS (Hydraulic Brake Systems) activities of its Chassis & Safety Division in Changshu Southeast Economic Development Zone, China. The new plant, Continental Automotive Systems (Changshu) Co. Ltd., is wholly owned by Continental AG and produces hydraulic brake systems, in particular front and rear calipers, drum brakes and brake actuation products.

With the total investment of about RMB 600 million (EUR 55,5 million), Continental Automotive Systems Changshu is situated on a land space of 73,000 square meters with around 25,000 square meters factory area. As planned, its production capacity will ramp up to 5 million calipers and 2.4 million actuation units by 2011 with a growing workforce of up to 1,000 employees within the next two years. The investment shows the firm commitment of Continental to secure its future in China and creates the strong footprint in China and Asia.

One of the main focuses of the automotive industry in the growth markets in Asia will be the so-called affordable cars: people want safe, yet affordable cars. With the new Changshu plant, the Continental Chassis & Safety Division will achieve fully localized manufacturing capability and will be able to better serve the automotive industry in China and Asia with the complete set of Hydraulic Brake products.

The new production plant for the HBS (Hydraulic Brake Systems) activities of its Chassis & Safety Division in Changshu Southeast Economic Development Zone, China. Heinz Zingel, Executive Vice President of Hydraulic Brake Systems Business Unit & Member of the Chassis & Safety Management Board of Continental AG said: “Changshu is Continental’s first worldwide plant that can provide all of our hydraulic brake products and processes out of one single location and is set up to support new technologies and products for local manufacturing in China, e.g. drum brakes and calipers for emerging markets. Therefore, it has the significant importance for us and our management put great emphasis and tremendous efforts on it. Besides, its product supply covers the whole Asian market, exporting to Japan, Korea and other Asian countries in addition to the growing local market requirements.”

Lutz Marczinski, Managing Director of Continental Automotive Systems Changshu said: “We are one of the biggest global automotive suppliers located in Changshu and our focus now, after one year of construction work and the official opening, is to make this new plant a world class manufacturing location within Continental as well as in the city of Changshu. During the conceptualization and execution process of this project, we have received strong and professional support from the local Government and authorities and have been confirmed in our selection of Changshu as our new manufacturing location. With the team growing to 270 at the end of this year, we are now concentrating to start our production and supply for the first customer SOP’s in October this year."

Jay Kunkel, President Asia and Member of the Automotive Management Board of Continental AG, outlined the new investment at the ceremony.“According to the forecast, from 2012 onwards nearly one out of two cars worldwide will be manufactured in Asia, and much of the growth in Asian auto market will come from China. We recognize the importance of China and the investment here in this new plant is a further proof that we take our plans to increase our presence and business in China very seriously. Moreover, it reflects our strategy to build and strengthen our network and our manufacturing operations in Asia to reinforce our leading role in Asia as Continental intends to make 25% of our total sales in this region by 2015.”

Continental began its automotive operations in China in 1994 and opened its Asia headquarters in Shanghai in January 2006. Today it has 9 automotive plants and one test center in China. With the strategic acquisition of Siemens VDO, Continental has opened up a new era with regard to its competitiveness in China with additional engineering, manufacturing and sales capabilities in Chassis & Safety, Powertrain and Interior technologies.

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Contact:

Nicole Geissler

External Communications

Continental

Division Chassis & Safety

Guerickestraße 7

60488 Frankfurt am Main

Phone: +49 69 7603-8492

Fax: +49 69 7603-3945

E-Mail: nicole.geissler@continental-corporation.com

Susanne Einzinger

Director Communications Asia

6F Jiushi Tower, Adjoining Building

28 Zhongshan Nan Road

200010 Shanghai, P.R. China

Phone: + 86 21 6080 4551

Fax: + 86 21 6080 2335

E-Mail:susanne.einzinger@continental-corporation.com