SHANGHAI, April 30, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- GKN plc and HUAYU Automotive Systems (HASCO) have announced a major expansion of their Chinese joint venture – Shanghai GKN Driveshafts (SDS). This development will make SDS a leading supplier of all-wheel drive (AWD) and electric-drive (eDrive) systems to these fast-growing segments of the Chinese car market.
SDS has been operating since 1988 and is the largest driveshaft manufacturer in China producing both sideshafts and propshafts, supplying domestic and western brands from eight manufacturing plants. The SDS expansion extends the scope of the JV to cover the complete GKN Driveline capability – including AWD and eDrive components and systems.
As a result of this development, GKN Driveline's wholly-owned facility in Shanghai will become part of the expanded JV.
Speaking in China, Andrew Reynolds Smith, GKN Automotive chief executive said: "China is the world's largest car market and, together with our partner HASCO, GKN Driveline has built a fantastic market leading position for SDS over the last 25 years."
"Today's announcement provides the platform to accelerate our business in the fast growing Chinese SUV and all-wheel drive market. This is a very important step as we continue to grow by leveraging GKN Driveline's leading technology and global footprint."
Vehicle production in China is expected to continue to grow strongly. A key driver of this growth comes from the demand for SUVs and AWD vehicles which are outgrowing the market. GKN's efficient and lightweight driveline technology positions SDS well to address the vehicle performance, emissions and fuel economy demands of the future.
The transaction remains subject to Chinese government approval. As a consequence of the change, SDS will change its name to Shanghai GKN HUAYU Driveline Systems.
GKN plc is a global engineering group – whose technologies and products are at the heart of vehicles and aircraft produced by the world's leading manufacturers.
GKN operates four divisions: GKN Driveline, GKN Powder Metallurgy, GKN Aerospace and GKN Land Systems. Approximately 48,000 people work in GKN companies and joint ventures in more than 30 countries. We harness our considerable technology and manufacturing resources to supply the highest quality systems, structures, components and services. GKN is listed on the London Stock Exchange (LSE: GKN) and recorded sales of £6.9 billion (RMB 69,000m) in the year to 31 December 2012.
GKN in China
Through more than 25 years investment and development of our capabilities, GKN now operates from 16 locations in China, employing 5,000 people. Continued investment in China over the next five years will see the numbers employed rise to 6,000 or more. GKN was the first global automotive supplier to invest in China in 1988.
GKN Driveline is the world's leading supplier of automotive driveline components and systems. As a global company serving the world's leading vehicle manufacturers, GKN Driveline develops, builds and supplies an extensive range of automotive driveline components – for use in the smallest ultra low-cost car to the most sophisticated premium vehicle demanding the most complex driving dynamics.
GKN Driveline is a leading global producer of CVJ Systems, AWD Systems, Trans Axle Solutions and eDrive Systems and operates in 22 countries at 56 locations employing 22,000 people.
SOURCE GKN Driveline