Mahle is taking over the air conditioning business of the Keihin Corporation in Japan, Thailand, and the USA as part of its strategic drive towards a more diversified business that is less dependent on ICE powertrain components.

A corresponding purchase agreement has been signed. With this step, Mahle says it is strengthening its global footprint in air conditioning technology and improving its market access, particularly in Japan and Southeast Asia.

Air conditioning systems are included in Mahle's strategic future business areas in order to further expand the company's activities beyond the conventional combustion engine. The implementation of the agreement, which is planned for the first quarter of 2021, still requires the approval of various antitrust authorities.

"This is an important strategic step in our transformation, enabling us to continue to develop our global competitiveness in our future business areas over the long term," says Dr. Jörg Stratmann, Chairman of the Mahle Management Board and CEO. "As a result, we will be able to offer our customers in the region even better support in the areas of development and production."

For electric vehicles in particular, air conditioning systems are one of the most important acceptance factors of the market. They have a direct influence on comfort and on the energy balance and therefore on the cruising range and performance of an electrically powered vehicle. The Mahle  portfolio thus includes highly efficient air conditioning systems and heat pump systems for use in electric vehicles.

In recent years, Mahle says it has steadily increased its business outside of the conventional passenger car combustion engine to around 60 percent today.