Novelis, which is headquartered in Atlanta, has broken ground on the expansion of its automotive aluminum manufacturing facility in Changzhou, China, in early October. The $180 million investment will double the facility's production capacity for heat-treated aluminum sheet by 100,000 metric tons to better meet the growing demand for automotive aluminum in Asia, according to the company. The facility also will be equipped with a high-speed slitter, and a fully automated packaging line, Novelis says, adding that the expansion is expected to create 160 jobs.
The company says the project is scheduled to be completed in 2020 to align with key customer's vehicle-launch plans.
Novelis' Changzhou plant is the company's first aluminum automotive sheet manufacturing facility in China. The wholly owned $100 million plant first began commissioning in 2014 with an annual capacity of 100,000 metric tons. Located in the heart of the Changzhou National Hi-Tech District, the plant provides customers in China and abroad with automotive sheet for use in lightweight vehicle structures and body panels with heat treatment and finishing capabilities.
The Changzhou facility will continue to partner with customers to launch their high-performance aluminum-intensive vehicles in Asia. Previous partner launches included the Cadillac CT6; CJLR's Jaguar XFL, XEL and the premium new-energy vehicle (NEV) NIO's ES8 SUV; FAW-Volkswagen Audi A6L; and HMC's IONIQ and Kona electric vehicle models. Novelis received the distinction of "Excellent Supplier" by FAW-Volkswagen in 2014 and 2015 and was awarded the "Strategy Cooperation" award in 2016 and 2017 by Chery Jaguar Land Rover.
"As market demand for lighter, more fuel-efficient vehicles continues to grow, Novelis will play a critical role in supporting the next generation of automotive innovation and design," says Satish Pai, managing director of Hindalco Industries, the parent company of Novelis Inc. "This expansion reinforces our steadfast commitment to our customers and communities and reaffirms our continued confidence in this ever-growing market.""This investment in Changzhou will allow us to better serve our automotive customers by providing world-class manufacturing capabilities, products that meet global quality standards and innovative solutions to make vehicles lighter, safer and stronger," says James Liu, managing director of Novelis China and vice president of Novelis' Automotive Business in Asia. "We will continue to work alongside our customers from program development to launch, to create