ThyssenKrupp Carbon Components GmbH has become the first and only carbon rim manufacturer to receive global road approval. The Kesselsdorf, Germany company received European road approval the German Federal Motor Transport Authority (KBA) last year. In addition to a general operating permit (ABE) marked by a KBA number, the rims now also have an approval from the US Department of Transportation (DOT) according to DOT E and from the Japanese Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism or according to the so-called Japan Light Alloy Wheel Standard (JWL). All approvals are noted on the rims and should document the corresponding quality standards.
Good news for motorists who long for a set of carbon fibre reinforced polymer (CFRP) rims but whose budgets don’t stretch to a Porsche 911 Turbo S. As of next year, thyssenkrupp Carbon Components will begin offering carbon wheels for aftermarket customers. It previewed the upcoming range at last month’s Essen Motor Show.
Under a joint venture contract signed on 22 June, thyssenkrupp Steel Europe will partner with Chinese companies to produce steel wheels, including lightweight hot-formed models, for the local automotive industry. China’s leading steel wheel manufacturer, Jingu Wheel, will hold a 51 per cent share in the joint venture, thyssenkrupp Steel Europe 34 per cent and Ansteel Iron and Steel Group 15 per cent. China’s competition authorities are now examining the tie-up, and thyssenkrupp anticipates the deal’s finalisation within the next few months.
Thyssenkrupp is to build a new automotive components plant in Hungary. The company will invest around 100 million euros in a new production site for engine components and steering systems. Construction of the plant in Jászfényszaru, 70 kilometres east of Budapest, will start in spring 2016, with production of electronic power-assisted steering systems and cylinder head covers with integrated camshafts planned to commence in 2018. Thyssenkrupp reports that it will create around 500 new jobs at the site in the coming years. The expansion has reportedly been prompted by “major orders from international OEMs”.
ThyssenKrupp Carbon Components and Maxion Wheels have established a cooperation agreement to develop and market ultra-lightweight aluminium and carbon fibre hybrid wheels for the premium vehicle OEM market. The two companies state that the products resulting from their collaboration will “will offer customers exceptional performance benefits at an attractive price point.”