Bowling Green, Kent. – Bendix Spicer Foundation Brake LLC (BSFB) recently broke ground on a 130,000-square-foot expansion of its wheel-end manufacturing facility in Bowling Green, Kent.
The addition to the existing BSFB plant will allow for increased air disc brake production capacity to keep pace with accelerating customer demand in North America. BSFB is a joint venture between Knorr-Bremse U.S. subsidiary Bendix Commercial Vehicle Systems, LLC and Dana Commercial Vehicle Products, LLC.
Dr. Peter Laier, Member of the Executive Board of Knorr-Bremse AG and responsible for the Commercial Vehicle Systems division, said, “The trend toward greater traffic safety is leading to an increasing substitution of drum brakes by the even more safety-oriented air disc brakes in the North American market. Against this background, the expansion of our wheel-end capacity in Bowling Green marks one of Knorr-Bremse’s largest investments in 2019 and 2020.”
Carlos Hungria, Bendix Chief Operating Officer added, “Our team in Bowling Green is exceptional. They surpassed the three-million-unit production milestone for the Bendix® ADB22X® air disc brake earlier this year. And now, through this latest investment in highly efficient production technology, they will be even better positioned to meet the escalating demand for air disc brakes in North America.”
BSFB is expanding its facility on a parcel adjacent to its 302,000-square-foot building, a leased space the company is purchasing as part of the investment. Among other improvements in support of Bendix’s North American air disc brake (ADB) portfolio, the state-of-the-art expansion will add a new bracket weld machine center, a third ADB production line, four ADB caliper machining centers, engineering test capabilities, plus an on-site employee medical clinic. Space will also be held in reserve to address longer-term growth opportunities. The facility employs more than 400 team members covering three shifts. Completion of the upgraded plant – which will total 432,000 square feet – is expected by the end of 2020. The joint venture produces the full lineup of commercially available Bendix® brand foundation drum and air disc brake solutions at the wheel-end facility. Since its opening in 2007, Bendix has invested millions of dollars in production capacity and automation – part of the company’s commitment to continually invest in and improve its manufacturing operations