South Africa’s only vehicle axle manufacture, Uitenhagebased Dana Spicer, marked 50 years of production yesterday.
The company supplies about 350 000 one-ton bakkie parts to Ford, General Motors, Nissan and Toyota annually.
It is a subsidiary of Dana Incorporated, a world leader in the supply of highly engineered drivetrain, sealing and thermal -management technologies.
Yesterday’s celebration was attended by a number of dignitaries, including customers, company management, government representatives and members of the firm’s 400-strong workforce.
“Beginning developing our own axles and diff locks in 1966, today we are part of a global organisation,” plant manager Paul Myburgh said.
The operation supplied highly engineered drivetrain components that improve the efficiency and performance of vehicles, Myburgh said.
“We are very proud to be able to employ so many who live within the community in which we operate. “With the plant being established here for 50 years, we have had generations of families forming part of our team,” he said.
“This has added to our culture and is something we value. And with our sustained growth, we envisage being able to recruit more in due course.”
On the sidelines of the celebration, Myburgh expressed confidence in the company’s growth prospects, saying that despite challenging economic conditions and depressed new vehicle sales at present, the company was in a positive position and optimistic.
One of the reasons was the upswing being experienced in new vehicle exports.
This had assisted in offsetting low new vehicle sales being experienced in the domestic market.