Toyo Tire Group expanding R&D base for North American tire business
Wednesday, January 18, 2017
Osaka, Japan - Toyo Tire & Rubber Co., Ltd. announced the expansion of its research and development capabilities at its Toyo Tire North America Manufacturing Inc. facility to fortify its North American business. This expansion, scheduled for completion during 2017, will build upon the product development capabilities, and the resources and personnel, at the existing TNA R&D department. TNA, the Toyo Tire Group’s North American tire manufacturing base (established December 2005), supplies the market with high-quality tires developed in collaboration with the Tire Technical Center, which is the TTR R&D headquarters in Itami City, Hyogo, Japan. The tires are manufactured using Toyo’s highly automated and proprietary A.T.O.M. (Advanced Tire Operation Module) technology. Expansion of the local R&D capabilities will involve increasing staff at each stage, from product planning, to product design, to commercialization. By creating a more effective and rapid regional product development capability, the Toyo Tire Group will be able to take a more direct and meticulous approach to meeting market needs. The plan is to increase by 1.5 times the number of R&D staff, to introduce equipment to measure and evaluate the static and dynamic properties of the tire, and to accelerate product evaluation and feedback into the development process. Once the TNA R&D expansion is complete in 2017, we will be in a better position to expedite development of both original equipment and replacement tires that more closely meets customer needs, and thereby increase the value of its North American tire operations. TNA completed its Phase Four plant expansion in 2016, increasing annual production capacity to 11.5 million tires (calculated for passenger car tires), and is now the Toyo Tire Group’s largest tire manufacturing facility. To further bolster its business focus on North America, TTR has created a North America Business Development Division at its Osaka, Japan headquarters effective January 1, 2017. This unit will be directly involved with promoting the North American business, and enable swift decision-making and appropriate management of the business.
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