Expansion to Meet Increased Demand for 18-inch and Larger Aluminum Wheels
TOKYO, August 29, 2006 _Ube Industries Co., Ltd. today announced that it has commenced plans to boost its production capacity for large diameter aluminum wheels. The move is in response to increasing demand for 18-inch and larger aluminum wheels for automotive use.
The expansion is taking place at the Ube Aluminum Wheel Factory in Ube City, Yamaguchi Prefecture. Once completed in fiscal 2008, the expansion will boost the plant's annual production capacity for large diameter wheels to 1.5 million wheels. The plant is currently capable of producing 900,000 large diameter wheels annually.
Ube Industries employs a proprietary squeeze cast process utilizing high pressure casting technology to produce lightweight aluminum wheels that are beautiful and tough. Ube aluminum wheels are highly regarded in both Japan and abroad, and can be found equipped as OEM wheels on vehicles ranging from luxury cars to sport utility vehicles (SUVs) and hybrid cars.
The aluminum wheel market is increasingly shifting toward the use of large diameter aluminum wheels, in response to greater demand for vehicle driving stability and better looking wheels. The trend has boosted the demand for large diameter aluminum wheels that are lightweight, beautiful and tough.
The Ube Aluminum Wheel Factory is Ube Industries' base for aluminum wheel production in Japan. The plant has an annual production capacity of 2.4 million wheels, with large diameter aluminum wheels currently accounting for upwards of 40% of all wheel production. Once the expansion is completed in fiscal 2008, large diameter aluminum wheels will account for as high as 70% of all wheel production at the plant. The move will put Ube Industries in a strong position to meet the needs of the market including responding to the demand for 19- and 20-inch aluminum wheels.
Aluminum Wheels by Ube Industries