SUMTER, S.C.—Continental Tire the Americas is expanding its plant in Sumter to accommodate production of the company's ContiSeal puncture-sealing and ContiSilent noise-absorbing passenger tire lines.
The project will add an undisclosed amount of space to the approximately 2 million square feet of manufacturing space under roof in Sumter. Conti did not disclose its investment in the expansion but said the project should create up to 50 jobs dedicated to the new production lines.
Producing these tires in the U.S. will increase the supply of tires on hand and reduce the turnaround time from order to delivery to customers across the region. Conti produces the ContiSeal and ContiSilent tire lines at two plants in Europe.
"This announcement celebrates Continental's trust in the Sumter facility to continue delivering quality products to our customers," Sumter Plant Manager Ahmed Boualam said.
Continental plans to begin installing equipment in September, and is targeting the start of production for May 2020.
Making these products in the U.S. will expand Conti's portfolio in the Americas for new mobility solutions, according to Juan Botero, Conti's vice president of key account management for original equipment passenger and light truck tires.
"We have listened to the needs of our customers and are excited to offer products and solutions designed to ensure a quieter and more comfortable ride, which undoubtedly will become increasingly important as we see more electrification and autonomous vehicles in the market."
ContiSeal is a technology developed by Continental designed to seal a damaged tire tread. Launched in 2007, the technology involves building a layer of sealant polymer on the tire's innerliner that envelops foreign objects such as nails, and prevents air loss, even if the object is removed
ContiSilent is a tire noise-reducing technology that involves the application of a polyurethane foam to the tire's innerliner, which absorbs interior noise. Conti launched the ContiSilent product in 2013.