Automotive-seating supplier Adient breaks ground on a $30 million state-of-the-art prototyping and testing facility in Pune, India, that it says will be the largest of its kind ever built in the country.

Construction of the new facility marks a major expansion of Adient’s existing technical center in Pune, which already has the largest workforce among the supplier’s global network of tech centers. It is to open in late 2018, Adient says in a news release.

Located on a 215,280-sq.-ft. (20,000-sq.-m) site near the existing tech center, the new prototyping and testing facility will boast full-scale prototyping, testing and trim capabilities, enabling Adient to conduct full product verification in India for global customer and regulatory standards.

The facility will house a fully hydraulic acceleration sled test system, offering precision pulse matching, full payload capability and high-speed video capture from onboard cameras. A 6-axis shaker table at the facility includes a semi-anechoic chamber and will enable NVH analysis and road-durability testing.

The new facility will provide physical testing to augment the capabilities of Adient’s India Tech Center, a global center for computer-aided engineering, computer-aided design automation and finite element analysis simulation expertise. First established in 2000, the center has about 1,000 engineers, including some 850 engineers based locally in Pune and another 150 engineers working at Adient locations outside India on global assignments.

“Adient was one of the first global automotive Tier 1 suppliers to enter India,” says Murali Rajagopalan, director and country manager-Adient India. “Over the past two decades since then, we have built world-class manufacturing and product-development capabilities across the country. We work closely with our customers, who recognize that success in India depends on developing India-specific products.

“India is phasing in new safety regulations for which development activities need to begin now,” he says. “As far as Adient is concerned, the timing could not be better. When this new facility opens we will be able to support our customers on an entirely new level, so I see this as an exciting new chapter for Adient India.”

Adient, then a division of Johnson Controls, established operations in India in 1995 through the formation of Tata Johnson Controls, a collaboration with Tata Automotive Components. Adient, which recently celebrated the first anniversary of its spinoff as an independent automotive supplier, has more than 2,500 employees at its wholly owned subsidiary Adient India.

Adient says its seating systems go into more than 25 million vehicles annually.