ZF Founds E-Mobility R&D Center in Japan

  • The Japan Tech Center will be located in Yokohama
  • Over the next two years, approximately 70 additional
    positions for engineers will be created
  • Close cooperation with ZF’s new E-Mobility Division
  • At the Tokyo Motor Show, ZF presents products for
    efficiency, safety, and autonomous driving
Tokyo/Friedrichshafen. ZF Friedrichshafen AG is expanding its
activities in Japan: The technology company is founding an
R&D center in Yokohama. The engineers at this location will
focus on e-mobility among other.

The Japan Tech Center will be located in Yokohama. The
negotiations with selected real estate owners are well underway. In
addition, since the acquisition of TRW, ZF owns an engineering
center established in 2001. “This is a special benefit of our
acquisition of TRW Automotive which we are using to further
expand our presence in Japan,” said ZF’s CEO Dr. Stefan Sommer
at the Tokyo Motor Show. At the Japan Tech Center,
approximately 70 new positions for engineers will be created over
the next two years in order to expand capacities for customer
consulting and support and for the development of new
technologies in the e-mobility sector. An additional increase in
personnel is planned for the future. The engineers will cooperate
closely with Japanese automotive manufacturers in order to locally
adapt ZF products to Japanese market requirements. Another focus
will be on power electronics as well as development and design of
entirely electric drivelines.

“In the ranking of countries manufacturing e-mobility products,
Japan is ranked first,” said Sommer, referring to the most recent
Electric Vehicle Index by McKinsey. “It is therefore logical for us to
open an e-mobility R&D center there.” The Japan Tech Center will
cooperate closely with the ZF departments which will be bundled
to create the new E-Mobility Division in January 2016.

The company’s Supervisory Board had only decided to create this
division, that controls all activities regarding the electrification of
cars and commercial vehicles, a few weeks ago. Dr. Hans-Jörg
Domian, who took over his new function in Japan on October 1,
2015, was entrusted with establishing and managing the Japan
Tech Center. In the past, Mr. Domian was responsible for
Advanced Engineering of the ZF Group and was Head of the
Advanced Engineering and Design department in Corporate
Research and Development in Friedrichshafen.

ZF at the Tokyo Motor Show

At the Tokyo Motor Show, ZF presents its portfolio for the
automotive megatrends of efficiency, safety, and autonomous
driving which ZF was able to expand thanks to its acquisition of
TRW Automotive. “For more than half a century, ZF has been an
established partner of Japanese automotive manufacturers,”
emphasized ZF’s CEO Sommer. “In our presentation this year, we
are mainly focusing on the fact that the ZF TRW product portfolio
is an excellent complement to the ZF product portfolio and that
our customers can now obtain even more products from a single
source.”

ZF in Japan

ZF has been represented in Japan with a subsidiary since 1980; ZF
TRW founded a subsidiary there in 1970. ZF has already had
business relations with Japanese automotive manufacturers since
the 1960s. The company has six locations in Tokyo, Yokohama,
Hiroshima City, Miyoshi City, Toyota City, and Utsunomiya, and
all in all employs approximately 250 employees at these locations.
ZF also has a network of about 20 service partners in Japan. In
2014, ZF (without TRW) generated sales of €400 million (¥58
billion) worldwide with Japanese customers.

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