Recaro Aircraft Seating has inaugurated its newly expanded production facility in Qingdao, China, which marks the completion of the second phase of the company’s ‘space2grow’ initiative, a multi-million Euro global expansion project started last year to support growth.
The production facilities measure approximately 7,500 square meters – sufficient space for up to five new assembly lines, which will increase the maximum production capacity of Recaro’s China plant to 60,000 seats per year.
“The new building reflects a clear commitment by Recaro Aircraft Seating to the Chinese market,” said Mr. Martin Putsch, CEO of Recaro Holding, at the inauguration ceremony. “When we chose to set up our plant here and invest in Qingdao, we knew it was the right decision and we are delighted with the support we have received from the High Technology Industrial & Development Zone of Qingdao.”
Dr Mark Hiller, CEO of Recaro Aircraft Seating also announced Recaro would continue to invest in the plant to further support ongoing business growth in the Asia Pacific region.
Recaro was the first international aircraft seat manufacturer to set up production facilities in China. It was also one of the early pioneering investors in the High Technology Industrial & Development Zone of Qingdao, a state-level zone approved by the State Council in May 1992. The zone houses a national-level collegiate science and technology park as well as a state-level software industrial base. Recaro has been operating in Qingdao for more than six years and managed to double its production output three years in a row during that period.
Expansion project at Schwaebisch Hall headquarters
A further part of Recaro’s space2grow expansion strategy has seen the company break ground on a new customer service area, flame lab and crash facility at its headquarters in Schwaebisch Hall, Germany. Recaro acquired an additional ground for the project and is investing 40 million Euros in the new buildings, which will cover 19,000 square meters, plus around 190 parking spaces, and a rack for around 60 bicycles. Construction kicked off in December 2019 and is slated for completion in summer 2021.
The customer service area will improve operational processes by connecting all production, administration and logistic areas via a central meeting axis.
Scheduled for a spring 2021 launch, the new flame lab will ramp up the facility’s testing capabilities by seamlessly integrating the fire test chambers with the flame certification tests.
By 2021, the new crash facility will be able to run 300 dynamic crash tests a year at the site for the certification and development of passenger seats. When complete, the new crash facility will include an Instron crash catapult with a force of 2 MegaNewtons and a 40m track length; two preparation rooms for the setup and post-processing of test seats; a dummy laboratory with 10 crash-test-dummy with integrated sensor to analyse possible injury criteria; and a pyrotechnical static inflation test room for the development of modern retention systems.