International Automotive Components (IAC) has celebrated the opening of its 10th and newest manufacturing facility in China, in the southwest city of Chongqing, supplying cockpit and interior components.
IAC Chongqing is the company's first wholly owned facility in China since it began operations there more than six years ago.
It's the company's second manufacturing location in Chongqing, but will consolidate both locations, growing the total number of IAC manufacturing facilities in Asia to 17, supported by six technical and engineering centres.
The new facility supplies both the Ford Kuga and Mondeo door panel and floor console assemblies, along with instrument panels, cockpits modules, finish trim panels and ducts for the Mondeo. IAC Chongqing also supplies door panel assemblies, glove boxes and instrument panels for the Volvo S80L and will begin manufacturing instrument panel trim components for a new Suzuki model later this year.
The Chongqing facility is a greenfield operation and employs 275 people. The 10,400 sq m plant was designed and prepared for production in approximately 20 months.
Chongqing is the first in Asia to introduce FastKast, IAC's proprietary A-surface material manufacturing process. FastKast incorporates thermoplastic polyolefin and polyvinyl chloride resins in conjunction with advanced process development which enhances product quality, improved tactile feel and aesthetics on instrument panels and other interior trim components. Late last year, FastKast debuted on Ford parts production at IAC's manufacturing site in Bals, Romania.
Additional capabilities in Chongqing include seamless airbag scoring, foaming, roll-coating, lamination, various welding techniques, punch trimming, vacuum forming and cut and sew. The facility is also equipped with a full test lab capable of airbag deployment validation testing, material and environmental testing and precision coordinate measuring machine (CMM) data collection.