Sumitomo Rubber Industries Ltd. (Kobe, Japan) plans to invest $122 million over three years to increase capacity for passenger car, light truck, and medium truck tires at its factory in Tonawanda, New York. Sumitomo is budgeting $96 million to raise capacity for car and light truck tires from 6,500 units/day to 12,000 units/day by year-end 2023, as well as another $26 million to raise truck tire capacity from 1,750 units/day to 2,300 units/day by year-end 2024.
In a press release announcing the project, Sumitomo said the expansions were driven by strong demand in North America for its light truck, SUV, and medium truck tires. In particular, sales of the company’s Falken-brand high-performance tires continued to expand steadily in 2020 despite the impact of COVID-19.
In Asia, Sumitomo is expanding capacity for light truck and SUV tires at plants in Amati, Thailand, and Miyazaki, Japan. With the expansions, Sumitomo will have capacity to produce 4,150 units/day at the plant in Thailand by year-end 2023 and 1,600 units/day at the plant in Japan by year end 2024. These expansions will primarily be used to supply the North American market.