India’s Demand for Air Bags Prompts Gosei to Start Another Plant

The increasing demand for vehicular air bags in India has prompted Japanese automotive parts manufacturer Toyoda Gosei Co. to set up another plant to provide them.

The new factory will cost about 900 million yen ($8.5 million) to build and supply air bags and other parts to parent Toyota Motor Corp., Honda Motor Co. and Suzuki Motor Corp.’s India unit, said Takatomo Abe, a spokesman for Toyoda Gosei.

While India doesn’t have laws requiring automakers to install air bags in vehicles, an increasing number of automakers, especially foreign brands, have taken to equipping even lower-end models with them to attract car buyers. The country’s roads remain among the deadliest in the world, and air bags are seen as a way to reduce fatalities and serious injuries in Asia’s third-biggest auto market.

Toyoda Gosei derived about 27 percent of its total sales in the past financial year from air bags, and has factories in North and South America, Europe, China, Thailand, Australia, Indonesia and Japan. The company produces some air-bag inflators but buys most of the devices from Daicel Corp.

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