Italian auto parts supplier Magneti Marelli SpA said it's stepping up investment in China, with a May 30 announcement that it opened a new plant in Guangzhou to make suspension systems, including plastic components and modules.
That comes after the company said it opened a new Shanghai headquarters and research facility in late April, and that it has several production facilities in “ramp up phase” in the country.
The new 17,000-square-meter (183,000-square-foot) Guangzhou factory will have annual capacity to supply suspension systems for 220,000 cars and pedal boxes for 100,000 vehicles, and will have about 60 employees, the company said.
“The opening of the [Guangzhou] plant is an important result for the suspension business area in terms of the standardization of processes and the application of advanced production technologies,” said Antonio Ferrara, CEO of Magneti Marelli Suspension Systems, in a news release.
“In terms of standardization, we are, for example, now able to replicate the same type and quality of process in Europe, in Brazil and in China, three key production areas in the automotive world,” he said. “In terms of technology, we have furthermore implemented an evolved welding technique which allows us to obtain traceability for every single product.”
The Milan-based company opened its new China headquarters in Shanghai in April, and has a total of 11 factories in 10 cities in the country. It said the Shanghai research and development center would have 700 staff by 2018.
“Magneti Marelli China is currently accelerating its growth with several new plants in ramp up phase,” said Sylvain Dubois, Country Manager of Magneti Marelli China, in announcing the Shanghai headquarters. “We are implementing in a decisive way our technology to offer our latest innovations to the Chinese and Asian markets.”
It said the Shanghai office will have 350 engineers and technicians engaged in R&D in a variety of areas, including hybrid and electric propulsion, electronics and electromechanical systems. Magneti Marelli said in December it was opening a joint venture factory in Changchun to make lighting parts.
The company said it had about 550 million euros ($600.9 million) in sales and 3,500 employees in China in 2015, out of global sales of 7.3 billion euros ($7.9 billion) and 40,000 staff.