NEW YORK Kobe Aluminum
Automotive Products LLC (KAAP) is constructing a production
line to meet growing North American demand for cast aluminum
bars, parent company Kobe Steel Ltd. said Nov. 21.
The line will supply Toyota
Industries Compressor Parts America Co.s new car air
conditioning compressor parts plant in Pendergrass, Ga., which
is expected to begin production in September 2013.
Bowling Green, Ky.-based KAAP
will invest $11 million to add the new line, constructing a new
39,000-square-foot building adjacent to its existing facility
that will hold a melting furnace, holding furnace, horizontal
casting line, homogenizing furnace, roll straightener, and
peeling and inspection line.
"KAAPs new investment will
help address the growing demand in North America for cast
aluminum bars and demonstrates our commitment to supporting our
customers globally," KAAP president Sam Koike said in a
Kobe Steel already manufactures
aluminum bars for air conditioning compressors at its Chofu
Works in Shimonoseki, western Japan, which are supplied to
Toyota Industries Corp.
Toyota Motor Corp. has expanded
its automobile exports from the United States, with 130,000
U.S.-built autos expected to be exported by year-end, up 52
percent from 2011 (
amm.com, Nov. 16).
"The demand here in North
America has increased. The purpose (of the production line) is
logistics and the efficiencies," a spokesman for the company
The plant, set to open in August
2013, will have a production capacity of 4,000 tonnes per