HEFEI, China (March 30, 2012)—Continental A.G. has broken ground on a $215 million expansion of its car tire plant in Hefei that will double the plant's size to 8 million tires a year by 2015.
Production at the 753,000-sq.-ft. plant started in May 2011 and Conti expects the first phase investment to be producing at a pace of 4 million units a year by year-end. Employment stands at 680 at the plant, in which Conti invested $260 million.
The expansion to 8 million tires will require about 620 additional employees, Conti said. Production in the expanded portion of the factory should start in late 2014 or early 2015, the firm said, and ramp up to full capacity over time.
Conti said the site will allow the company to double the size of the plant again to 16 million units a year, the timing of which will depend on market development.
Production at Hefei is focused initially on the ContiComfortContact 5 and ContiMaxContact 5, premium products tailored for the Chinese market, Conti said.