A conversation with Hardy Yu of Kuo Chuan Precision/KC Auto Parts

"One-stop research and development is what we have been doing since 1985," says Yu.

From left, Steven Yu, and Hardy Yu, of Kuo Chuan (KC Auto Parts) on the first day of AAPEX 2022. Photo by Mark Phillips/Aftermarket Intel

Kuo Chuan is a family owned company. Tell me about how the company was founded

Tseng-Kuo Yu, who is my father, established Kuo Chuan Precision Ind. Co., Ltd., as KC, in 1985. In the very beginning, there were only my parents and a few staff for the overall operations. The initial primary business was only for the stamping process of mold-making and spare parts making. After a few years, my father recruited his younger brother, Kuo-Chiang Yu, and a few relatives to the team. KC started to break into the auto parts industry with its door latch program for Southeastern Asia markets. There were around 25 employees at that time.  

In the early 1990s, KC had over 50 people and they were not only for the aftermarket business but also started with an OEM business. Now, there are three primary market segments — aftermarket, OEM and ODM (customized projects).

What is the philosophy or mindset the company uses to approach the market?

Quality, service and branding are how we approach our markets. We’re loyal to our importers, distributors, and private label program customers.

What kind of parts and parts categories does Kuo Chuan produce?

Window regulator, hood latch, hood hinge, door latch, door hinge, door striker, door check, door handle, trunk latch, trunk hinge and tailgate handle for pickup trucks.

What certifications does Kuo Chuan hold?

IATF16949, IS9001 and Intertek Certified (attachments are for IATF16949 and ISO9001 and there is no physical cert of Intertek but clients can search from the Intertek teams.)

How many people does Kuo Chuan employ?

200 people.

Can you describe, in general, the process that Kuo Chuan uses to bring a new product to the market?

Generally speaking, we usually follow the primary importer’s instructions for potential projects combined with our internal market analysis. Once we kick off a project, the proper price-setting will be done during the development, then we move forward with the primary importers for releasing the new SKUs.

What about the research and development capabilities of Kuo Chuan?

Our core values focus on stamping, plastic injection and the overall assembly — one-stop research and development is what we have been doing since 1985. For the aftermarket, we have been doing reverse engineering, including drawing, tooling and prototype testing, in-house. After that, we will move forward to trial run then sending samples to the target markets and the prospective for further confirmations on quality issues before starting production. 

When it comes to one of our significant deliveries, which is the window regulator program, the general R&D lead time for a new development will be 60 to 75 days. The reason why we are confident to make it quickly is because we have already developed a 6,500-SKU database for the marketplace.

What kind of testing capabilities does Kuo Chuan use to ensure parts are of the highest quality?

Regarding the aftermarket, we usually comply with customer’s requirements. If the customer does not have any requirements, we will provide our lab data and related results for further reference. Referring to the window regulator, for example, we usually apply the lifetime test with an actual used door to simulate the real-world situation.

What’s something you’re particularly proud that Kuo Chuan has accomplished?

Kuo Chuan has been awarded with Corporate Social Responsibility awards from the government for our educational donations, our work helping farms and introducing solar power into our operations.

Kuo Chuan also has been certified by many OEMs. We also enroll our employees in advanced training and education programs to further our capabilities.

In 2020, we installed a solar system on the roof of our facility. We use power generated from it to provide power to the facility and sell the excess to the public power company.

Learn more about the company here.

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