By Liz White, UT staffTroy, Michigan-French automotive supplier Faurecia announced 11 Jan that it plans to open six new interiors, seating and exhaust facilities across the US. Faurecia North America, headquartered in Troy, Michigan, will add plants in Michigan, Ohio and South Carolina to its existing 17 plants in the US, Canada and Mexico. "This expansion of the North American footprint will support production for new programmes with several OEMs, " said Faurecia's press statement.Faurecia will now make automotive modules for interior systems in Fraser and Sterling Heights, Michigan, and in Northwood, Ohio. It will make seats on a just-in-time basis in Sterling Heights, Michigan, and Fountain Inn, South Carolina. And the group will produce exhaust systems on a just-in-time basis in Toledo, Ohio. At the interior systems plants in Fraser and Sterling Heights, Michigan, Faurecia will begin producing front end module for the North American market-a first for the Nanterre, France headquartered supplier. . "North America has become a significant part of Faurecia's global business and market strategy," said Pierre Lévi, chairman and ceo of Faurecia, in the group's announcement. And James Orchard, president of Faurecia North America, gave figures to support this: "In North America, Faurecia has grown to a $1.5 billion dollar business and is on target to exceed $2.5 billion in sales by the end of 2009," he said. US revenue for Faurecia in 2005 should be about 20 percent up, Orchard commented, adding that, Faurecia plans to invest nearly $300 million in the US in capital expenditures by 2009.According to Faurecia, recent years have seen a significant increase in its US business with automakers such as General Motors, DaimlerChrysler, Ford Motor Co., BMW and Volkswagen. In the current expansion, Faurecia will hire over 2000 more employees over the next four years, bringing its US workforce to 9200 by the end of 2009.Faurecia North America had sales of $1300 million in 2004. In 2004, the group total sales were Euro 10 700 million. It operates in 28 countries and employs 60 000 people at 160 sites. The group makes six vehicle modules: seats, cockpits, doors, acoustic modules, front ends and exhaust systems."