Toyo Tire expanding R&D capabilities at US plant site
Throughout the course of this year, Toyo Tire & Rubber’s manufacturing operation in North America will expand its research and development capabilities in order to expedite the development of both original equipment and replacement market tyres. The company has not disclosed the level of investment being made in the Toyo Tire North America Manufacturing facility, however it will result in a 50 per cent increase in the size of the research and development team.
In addition to boosting staff numbers, the expansion will introduce equipment for measuring and evaluating the static and dynamic properties of tyres and will accelerate product evaluation and feedback into the development process. Toyo comments that these additions and the role they’ll play in speeding up tyre development will “increase the value of its North American tyre operations.”
The Toyo Tire North America Manufacturing facility in White, Georgia produces tyres using Toyo’s proprietary A.T.O.M. (Advanced Tire Operation Module) technology. A fourth phase of expansion at the decade-old plant was completed last year and raised annual production capacity to 11.5 million tyres. It is now Toyo Tire’s largest tyre manufacturing facility.
To further bolster its business focus on North America, Toyo Tire & Rubber has also created a North America Business Development division at its headquarters in Osaka, Japan. This division came into existence on 1 January and is directly involved with promoting various aspects of Toyo’s North American business, such as enabling swift decision-making and appropriate management of the business.