Supplying main auto components to global production bases of Hyundai-Kia Motor Company, Hyundai Mobis has opened a new lamp plant in the Czech Republic and commenced production. Hyundai Mobis plans to make this plant as a production base for main auto components for the European market, contributing to 'elevating global competitiveness of Hyundai-Kia operating in Europe, while accelerating penetration into European global automakers'.

The automotive supplier invested approximately KRW140bn (US$122.8m) towards opening the new lamp plant of 54,000m2 on a site of 190,000m2 in Mošnov, near Ostrava, Czech Republic. This plant has an annual capacity of 750,000 headlamps and tail lamps respectively, totalling 1,500,000 lamps.

The company expects that by supplying lamps from this plant to Hyundai Czech plant and Kia Slovakia plant, both within a 2-hour drive distance, it will be able to reduce transport time and cost while providing real-time responsiveness to the automakers' production strategies. Before the opening of the plant, it took more than a month to transport lamps produced from Gimcheon plant in South Korea by shipping them from Busan to the port of Koper, Slovenia and this made it limited to establish flexible production strategies that suit the circumstances.

From now, headlamps will be assembled as front-end modules at Hyundai Mobis Czech and Slovakia module plants and supplied to each plant of Hyundai-Kia, while tail lamps will be directly delivered to final assembly plants. The automotive supplier will also produce lamps for after-sale markets and supply to local distribution centres in Slovakia. By doing so, it aims to reduce inventory cost and shorten lead time, consequently improving after-sale service satisfaction of Hyundai-Kia drivers in Europe.

Hyundai Mobis is expecting that the new plant will lead to raising the possibility of winning orders for lamps, which are a major high value-added product. As global automakers consider punctual delivery and prompt response to unexpected situations to be as important as technical prowess and quality competitiveness when they choose automotive suppliers, having local production bases is a huge competitive edge in competing for orders.

Since it produced the first lamp for Sorento, KIA at its Gimcheon plant in 2009, it has rapidly built up its technology and quality competitiveness, elevating its position to the global top tier.

More specifically, Hyundai Mobis successfully commercialised HID Full AFLS in 2011 and became the first Korean company to commercialise LED Full AFLS in 2012. Last year, it also completed the development of ADB, which has few cases of mass production throughout the world. Based on such competitiveness, Hyundai Mobis is currently supplying lamps to many global automakers, including Volkswagen, Chrysler, Mitsubishi, Mazda and Subaru.

"To produce auto components that meet ever-changing local environments and regulations in a rapid manner, it is essential to have local production bases for core auto components," said Jeon Yong-duk, executive vice president of auto component division of Hyundai Mobis. "We will make our Czech plant as a production base specialising in core auto components for Europe and through aggressive sales operation based on this base, we will solidify our position in Europe."

Meanwhile, Hyundai Mobis operates a local production base for core auto components on each continent to ensure rapid and efficient supply of auto components. The company operates a lamp plant in addition to a module plant in Mexico to facilitate supply of auto components in the US and also opened an audio plant in India. In China, it is actively responding to local demand by operating core automotive component plants, including a lamp plant in Jiangsu, an airbag plant in Shanghai, a brake component plant in Wuxi and an automotive electronic component plant in Tianjin.