Magna Powertrain has broken ground for a new greenfield manufacturing facility in the Tianjin Airport Economic Area.

Volkswagen recently ordered rear axle drives and power take-off units for locally assembled VW and Audi models in China and these will be made at the new US$68m factory which will be 13,500 sq m in size and will employ 400 to start. Assembly of the first units should start in 2012.

"As our customers expand their manufacturing footprints around the world, we will be there to support them," said Jake Hirsch, president, Magna Powertrain.

Magna Powertrain established its first China operation in 2005. It now has three locations in China - sales and engineering centres in Shanghai and Changzhou and manufacturing in Changzhou.

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