With the heightened focus on vehicle safety in India, demand for global technology major Continental’s products is fast growing. Today the company announced the completion of a million units of Electronic Brake Systems (EBS) from its Gurgaon Plant. Continental set up a line for localisation of Anti-lock Brake Systems (ABS) assembly, besides Electronic Stability Control (ESC) systems, at Gurgaon in 2016.
Continental safety systems rank among the most advanced worldwide and cater to all categories of vehicles. With increasing awareness and acceptance of safety technologies in vehicles, India is emerging as a focus market for airbags, ABS and ESC, for light vehicles, four-wheeler and two-wheeler markets. Further to investments in 2016, the company set up a production line to localise ABS Electronic Control Units (ECU) in its Bangalore plant in 2018.
The growth in the ABS market in India is driven primarily by government mandates. ESC, although yet to be mandated in India, will be the next step to provide more safety and comfort to the driver, and will see an uptake in the next five years. Continental is a global market leader for ESC.
The technology company also has a range of EBS for active safety of two-wheelers, including one-channel ABS for smaller motorcycles and scooters. Based on its proven ABS technology for passenger cars, the one-channel ABS was developed especially for cost-sensitive markets.
According to Krishan Kohli, Head of Continental’s Vehicle Dynamics business in India, “Innovative technologies and intelligent systems for vehicles are imperative for a future with zero accidents. Continental is well-equipped to support India towards achieving this. We are actively pursuing our long-term strategy towards the realization of ‘Vision Zero’.
Anudeep Garg, Head of Operations for Vehicle Dynamics, in India, said: “We are continuously developing the technology of electronic brake systems, improving upon it, and also optimising costs through localisation. From the Gurgaon plant, we currently supply to OEMs across India and also to Malaysia. We are glad to achieve this one-million milestone. Continental’s electronic brake systems have been enhancing safety since 1984 globally. India is now a part of that legacy.”
Looking to expand capacity
The 147-year-old German technology company has been present in India for close to 50 years, through technology partnerships and joint ventures for its various businesses. The first Indian independent legal entity was formed in 2008, following the acquisition of Siemens VDO globally. Today the Tier 1 automotive supplier, tyre manufacturer and industrial partner operates across India – with over 8000 employees across 15 locations, including eight plants that cater to the Indian market, and a Technical Center that supports Continental's global R&D activities.
On the occasion of its 10th anniversary celebration recently, the technology company had announced investments in the country on a high three-digit crore rupees level within the next two years in India, and a plan to increase headcount to 10,000 in the same period. The company also announced the inauguration of its new R&D facility in Gurgaon, to cater to global and regional R&D requirements for its Hydraulic Brake Systems and Vehicle Dynamics businesses.
In 2017, Continental generated sales of 44 billion euros and currently employs more than 243,000 people in 60 countries.
Also read: Passenger vehicle airbags and two-wheeler ABS as a Rs 7,500 crore business opportunity in India