Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Ltd (MHI) has announced it will increase production of diesel forklift engines by more than 20%, from the current 120,000 units per year to 145,000 by 2007.
The company said in a statement the production increase was in response to "sharply increasing demand" from China and the western world, and to tighter exhaust-fume emission controls planned in the US.
The engines targeted for investment deliver outputs from 4-102kW. MHI sold about 70,000 of these engines in 2002.
The company said it expected sales this year to increase to 125,000 units, reflecting a construction boom in China and economic recovery in the US, increasing the annual output each year until 2007.
The US Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) Tier 3 emission standards for non-road diesel engines (75-130 kW) take effect in 2007.
The standards require engine manufacturers to reduce emissions of nitrogen oxides (NOx), non-methane hydrocarbons (NMHC), carbon monoxide (CO) and particulate matter (PM) to new, low levels.
"MHI views compliance with the new EPA standards as an opportunity for sales share expansion, and it aims to strengthen its related sales activities," the company said.
"The company ... looks to double its global share from the current 4% to near 8% in 2007."
To achieve the expansion, MHI would invest more than JPY3.5 billion (USD31.8 million) at its Sagamihara plant in Kanagawa this year, the company said.
MHI is one of the world's leading heavy machinery manufacturers, with consolidated sales of JPY2,373 billion (USD21.5 billion) in fiscal 2003, ended March 31, 2004.