KW Automotive USA-Plant Tour

by Mike Kojima

If you have been a long time MotoIQ reader, then you have probably read about our tour of performance suspension giant KW Automotive's production and R&D facilities in Germany. KW has had a North American operation for some years now, but has recently expanded their facilities from their first location in Sanger, California to a new location in Clovis, California. 

KW's old Sanger facility was mostly dedicated to warehousing and service of their suspension stuff. The new location is being put together to have additional flooring space for R&D, engineering and Manufacturing.  This includes all of the KW Automotive brands consisting of ST Suspensions, Belltech, LSD Doors and of course, KW Suspension.

In a time where our industry for years has been cheaping out and sending production of parts overseas to Asia, it has been exciting for us to see an importer of parts invest in our country and gradually start to move engineering, service and production capability into a stateside facility. 

Come join us for a walk around KW Automotive's new building!

What can we say, KW Automotive has a really nice lobby made nicer due to the fact that it was air conditioned on this 105 degree day in beautiful Clovis, California!  The lobby has displays of most of KW's products.  KW's building is 85,000 square feet and KW Automotive North America currently employs 50 people.
The first place we visited inside KW's massive headquarters building was our favorite place- the racing department lab.  Here, KW Motorsports shocks are serviced and sometimes built to order, although the bulk of Motorsports production is done in Germany.  Customer rebuilds and re-valving are also done here.  Here is the shock dyno that verifies the correct operation of a shock and plots out the damping force over velocity. 
Some KW street dampers are built to order here as well.  The lab, like all of KW's facilities, is well organized and so clean you could eat off the floor. 
Here, a KW Clubsport is being torn down to be rebuilt for a customer.  KW's have a lifetime guarantee so they are completely rebuildable and serviceable. KW chief engineer Klaus Frank is in the background with his trademark yellow glasses.
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Connor Harrison
Connor Harrisonlink
Tuesday, September 08, 2015 7:08 AM
Awesome! Thank you for this one. I love getting the "behind the scenes" look at manufacturers. Knowing more about the companies that make my parts makes a big difference in who I want to spend my money with.
Tuesday, September 08, 2015 7:16 AM
I did not know KW supplied ST and Belltech. Pretty neat! Also, glad to see that KW has transferred their German principles to an American plant. Just one more reason to shop KW, NOW MADE IN AMERICA!!!
Tuesday, September 08, 2015 8:37 AM
You know you have made it when you have custom painted pallet racks.
Tuesday, September 08, 2015 1:20 PM
isn't KW moving production to USA "cheaping out"... US is cheaper than Germany is it not? not that I'm complaining... hopefully this brings the cost of KW's back down again. I remember when KW V3's could be had for under 2k for an Evo, now its hard to find anything under its list price of 2700. at that price might as well get Ohlins (which come with camber plates)
some dude
some dudelink
Monday, October 12, 2015 12:17 AM
frickin awesome to get to see what the inside of the facility is like, as i've driven by it a hundred times and wondered.
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