Text: J Srikant


With the aim of servicing both local and international clients better, Continental Automotive Brake Systems (India) Private Limited, a subsidiary of the international automotive supplier Continental, recently moved its Hydraulic Brake Systems (HBS) manufacturing to a new plant in Gurgaon. The fullfledged plant also has an R&D centre, making it an end-to-end solution for Continental. Spread across an area of 7,000 sq m, the new plant has an initial capacity of 1.5 million units of calipers, boosters and drum brakes. According to the company the capacity can be increased whenever there is an increase in the demand.

 Murali Srinivasan, Managing Director, Continental Automotive Brake Systems (India) Pvt. Ltd

Murali Srinivasan, Managing Director, Continental Automotive Brake Systems (India) Pvt. Ltd

“Continental is supporting our global OEMs as well as domestic OEMs from the new facility in India. This plant will help support our global growth target and solidify our footprint in the region,” said Murali Srinivasan, Managing Director, Continental Automotive Brake Systems. The new plant is only 15 km away from its earlier plant, which Srinivasan said will help the company make use of all the logistics put in place, letting them hit the ground running. Continental Automotive Brake Systems entered India in 2008 through a joint venture  with Rico and has been using Rico’s facility for manufacturing. In 2012, it became a fully owned subsidiary of the German company. Continental has now commenced direct export to South Africa and Eastern Europe and indirect export, through an already established customer base, to Europe and the ASEAN region.

The Plant 

The core process at the plant includes machining and assembly of the components. To make the whole process more efficient, time-saving,
and cost effective, the company has outsourced non-core processes like plating and surface treatment. Even casting is out sourced as these are not
high-precision jobs.

The first section of the plant includes machining of components. There are three types of components which go through machining at the plant – tandem master cylinder (TMC), caliper housing and caliper anchor. The plant has been divided into two cells for better flow. One is the TMC machining and caliper machining. Caliper machining includes caliper housing and caliper anchor machining. The plant also has a clean room where there are three lines. First line is for central valve tandem master assembly and second is the plunger type tandem master
cylinder assembly. These are two types of TMC assembled at the plant. The last line is for the wheel cylinder which is used in the drum brakes. It is
done inside the clean room to protect the drum brakes from dust or other contamination.

The other products manufactured here are the boosters and calipers. The focus of the plant is mainly towards hatchbacks and entry level sedans.  ome of the parts are also supplied for LCVs up to 4 tonne; however, that forms a minute chunk of the supply. There is also a new line for incremental assembly of drum brakes which is being set up at the plant. This is part of the localisation programme at the plant for in-house assembly of drum brake shoes. At present, there are 7 assembly lines at the plant for all the components together.

There is a lot of focus in the plant to keep the machines manned. This is because there are a lot of variants which are manufactured in the plant which require frequent changeovers at the lines. This also helps in keeping the overall investment down as the extent of automation is avoided wherever it is not required. There are approximately 200 employees at the plant at present. When asked about the USP of this new plant Srinivasan said, “This is a complete Conti facility with full range and experience of what the global company has to offer.” ACI


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