GKN Driveline Expands AWD Production With New Thai Facility

To meet the growing all-wheel drive (AWD) needs of key customers in the Asia Pacific region and to bolster our global footprint, GKN Driveline has officially opened its new AWD manufacturing facility in Thailand.

The GKN DrivelineRayong AWD facility will manufacture key AWD driveline technology, including front and rear final drive units (FDU) and electronic differential locking (EDL) systems for transaxle systems. The facility will supply a number of global OEMs, including Toyota, Nissan and Mitsubishi

Demand for AWD vehicles is rising rapidly in the Asia Pacific region, with independent forecasts suggest that AWD production from countries in the region will account for approximately a third of global AWD output by 2020.

Many of GKN’s customers are adding AWD vehicles to their ranges and this new manufacturing facility will enable them to source key advanced AWD driveline technology locally.

The 4,800 square meter facility is located on the Hemaraj Eastern Seaboard Industrial Estate, close to GKN Driveline’s existing facility in Thailand, which produces driveshafts and constant velocity joints.

It was officially opened by GKN Driveline Asia Pacific President Arnaud Lesschaeve at an inauguration ceremony attended by the British Ambassador, Mark Kent, GKN Driveline executives, customers, employees and local dignitaries. Work on this significantproject began in 2013.

Arnaud Lesschaeve said: “Demand for all-wheel drive vehicles is growing significantly in the Asia Pacific region and will continue to do so. This new facility adds to our all-wheel drive technologycapacity in the region and, along with facilities in China and Japan, means that we can continue to meet our customers’ needs. This new facility also strengthens our presence in Thailand, a country in which we have been operating for nearly 20 years and one of our key industrial hubs in Asia.”

GKN first began manufacturing driveline systems in Thailand in 1998 and has grown its presence in the country since, adding a forging plant in 2003 and expanding driveshaft capacity last year.

Hideo Miyagi, Plant Director of GKN Driveline Rayong, added: “We have worked very closely with colleagues from GKN Driveline Japan to ensure we have established world-class Final Drive Unit and Electronic Diff Locker production.in a short period of time. We are proud to commence the manufacture of advanced AWD technology in Thailand.”

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