Continental to ramp up production at largest tire plant

The international tire manufacturer and automotive supplier Continental today announced plans to significantly expand its truck and bus tire production facilities in Otrokovice (Czech Republic). With a total investment of €165 million in the next years, Continental takes the next step in the investment program for its Tire division.

“The expansion of our truck and bus tire manufacturing footprint in Otrokovice is a strategic step focusing on long-term market growth. The plant will not only continue to serve Europe, Middle East and Africa; we will develop Otrokovice also into a production hub for The Americas and Russia,” says Dr. Andreas Esser, Head of the Business Unit Commercial Vehicle Tires at Continental. This five-year expansion program will ultimately double the truck and bus tire production capacity at that site to almost 1.5 million units annually.

“In addition to the further build-up of production capacity, we will also benefit from the synergies of being in the same location with our largest passenger and light truck tire production site worldwide. Logistics, technological competence and experience in up-scaling production are already in place. This additional capacity will give us more flexibility especially in regard to the product portfolio, and it gives us a chance to supply markets in Americas and Russia,” comments Thierry Wipff, Head of Manufacturing Commercial Vehicle Tires at Continental. “We can flexibly adjust the ultimate timing of the stepwise capacity increase and corresponding invest to the market development and the demand for our truck and bus tires,” he adds. As part of the investment, more than 300 new jobs will be created throughout all production areas.

Earlier this year, Continental has announced plans to invest $95 million (approximately €70 million) into its North American truck and bus tire production in Mount Vernon, USA, and €100 million into its largest European truck and bus tire production in Puchov (Slovakia) over the next years. “While our Puchov project is mainly targeting on mid-term growth in the evolving markets of Eastern Europe, Middle East and Africa, the Otrokovice invest is a strategic step based on long-term market growth”, Esser says.

Exactly one year ago, the Continental plant in Otrokovice celebrated “20-40-80” – the twentieth anniversary of Continental operations in Otrokovice, 40 years of production at the current location, and 80 years of tire production in the Otrokovice region. With a current annual production capacity of 700,000 truck and bus tires and 21 million passenger and light truck tires, Otrokovice is home to Continental’s largest tire production site in the world.