Bendix investing $65 million in Kentucky plant expansion

Growing air disc brake demand leads to 100 new jobs

Bendix Spicer Foundation Brake is investing $65 million to expand its wheel-end manufacturing facility in Bowling Green, KY, and plans to add 100 new jobs, the joint venture of Bendix Commercial Vehicle Systems and Dana Inc. (NYSE:DAN) said Sept. 6.

Bendix officials broke ground Friday on the 8.5-acre, 130,000-square-foot expansion next to its 302,000-square-foot building, where it makes Bendix-branded air disc brakes for commercial vehicles. External improvements include six docks and three recycling compactors.

Bendix will purchase a leased building for a new bracket weld machine center, a third air disc brake production line, four caliper machining centers, engineering test capability and a medical clinic and wellness center. Unused space is designated for future expansion.

Completion of the upgraded plant — which will total 432,000 square feet — is expected by the end of 2020. Bendix qualified for $1.5 million in tax incentives over 10 years from the Kentucky Economic Development Finance Authority, according to the Bowling Green Daily News.

The plant, which employs 487 workers on three shifts, has expanded several times since opening in 2007 with 133 employees and 187,000 square feet of manufacturing space.

The plant earlier this year marked production of its 3 millionth ADB22X air disc brake.

“Our team in Bowling Green is exceptional,” said Carlos Hungria, Bendix chief operating officer. “The improved space is part of our ongoing drive to optimize Bendix’s production facilities as we focus squarely on addressing the needs of our customers,” which include General Motors Co., Peterbilt Motors Co., Blue Bird Corp. and Volvo Trucks North America.

Bowling Green ranked No. 1 among areas with populations between 50,000 and 200,000 for new and expanded corporate facilities in 2018, according to Site Selection magazine.

Alan Adler

Alan Adler is a Detroit-based award-winning journalist who worked for The Associated Press, the Detroit Free Press and most recently as Detroit Bureau Chief for He also spent two decades in domestic and international media relations and executive communications with General Motors.