Innovative Brakes a Key Element for Safer MobilityBy Alejandro Enríquez | Thu, 06/17/2021 - 11:49
Q: What progress has been made in the country’s mobility regulations?
A: The official decree published on Dec. 18, 2020 reforms Article 4 of the Mexican Constitution to state that, “all people have the right to mobility on safe roads in conditions of accessibility, efficiency, sustainability, quality and equality.” Industry standards regarding mobility and road safety, such as Mexican NOMs or NMX, should aim to comply with this reform. All laws involving transit regulations at local or municipal levels will need to follow the constitutional mobility guidelines.
Q: What are Haldex’ newest innovations in braking systems?
A: Haldex wants to build a world of safer vehicles through improved braking and drivetrain systems. That is our mission and it drives us toward new developments and innovations that result in safer vehicles. New developments include our electromechanical braking systems, which are already being used by electric buses. Other solutions include an air braking system that generates pressure in the compressor to activate the braking system. Braking systems in electric vehicles need to be more efficient to avoid using up battery power unnecessarily. This is where Haldex’s electromechanical braking systems come into play. When the braking system is activated using a rheostat, it improves efficiency.
We have also made advancements in drivetrains. One of our braking systems assists the vehicle’s drivetrain through a series of sensors that detect if the driver requires more force while taking a curve. The system can also fully assist the driver in what is called brake driving. For example, part of the system can break slightly on one side and then on the other to correct the vehicle’s trajectory.
We are also developing fully autonomous heavy vehicles. ITCM systems, which are developed 100 percent by Haldex, help telematics systems to monitor the vehicle’s tires, refrigeration sensors and many other aspects.
Q: As new heavy-vehicle brands arrive in the country, what opportunities is Haldex targeting?
A: In North America, we focus on tractor trucks. For other vehicles, we focus on air-disc braking systems manufactured in Mexico. We are the only supplier in North America that manufactures disc braking systems in Mexico. We also manufacture the automatic braking adjustment system, which we invented. Other suppliers decided to go to China but we bet on Mexico with a plant in 1991, pouring in over US$20 million in initial investments in 2010 and an equal investment in 2021.
Q: How is Haldex helping to develop local suppliers?
A: Haldex’s production is highly complex. Our facilities encompass four manufacturing plants in one site. For disc braking systems and automatic adjusters, we have a great pool of forging suppliers. We balance our supplies with others from the US and Canada but we bet on our Mexican partners. Suppliers must be prepared to avoid disruptions given our large production volume that supplies virtually all heavy OEMs and the aftermarket in the country.
Q: What are the strengths and challenges regarding Haldex’s supply chain?
A: Plastic injection, painting, coating and packaging suppliers are strong in the region. Most are subsidiaries of our suppliers in the US. At Haldex, we also develop local suppliers but aluminum comes mainly from China.
In terms of challenges, we have faced problems in the production of ABS braking systems, which perform well in Mexico and Brazil, due to chip shortages. Anti-rollover system production also requires chips. The smart trailer model requires Power-Line-Carrier (PLC) communication to transmit information. Due to these challenges, we have not made our final forecasts for this market yet.
Q: What are Haldex’s priorities for the Mexican market in the coming years?
A: Our priority is to strengthen our presence in the aftermarket. This entails different elements due to the complexity of the aftermarket, which includes distributors, wholesale spare parts dealers and workshops. Our mission is to work alongside distributors and dealers to provide the best aftermarket service in Mexico by supplying parts within two working days. We are in a strong position given our investments in warehouses across the country.
Haldex provides innovative brake solutions to the global commercial and heavy-vehicle industry with a focus on enhanced safety, environmental awareness and vehicle dynamics.