Chatham-Kent is located directly next to the United States auto manufacturing epicentre, having 23 OEM assembly plants within less than a four-hour drive. Ontario is home to top automakers, 700+ automotive parts manufacturers and 500+ tool, die and mould makers thanks to the infrastructure, skilled workforce, easy access to rail and the NAFTA Superhighway that connects Canadian and United States vehicle manufacturers. Our auto parts manufacturers, makers and suppliers are recognized for their top-quality products, groundbreaking innovation and excellent business practices.
Chatham-Kent's roots in the automotive sector go back to Gray-Dort Motors Ltd., one of Canada's earliest automobile manufacturers. In the 21st century, auto industry plants in the municipality include AutoLiv Canada in Tilbury (airbags), Mahle in Tilbury (emissions controls and plastics), KSR in Ridgetown (automotive electronic pedal assembly and sensors), Dana Canada in Chatham (heat shields for thermal and acoustic management of exhaust manifolds, catalytic converters, and turbochargers), and Continental Corporation (Powertrain Canada ULC) in Chatham (design, development, and testing of actuators for clean, efficient vehicles).
Our nickname "The Classic Car Capital of Canada" comes from the abundance of classic car events in the community. Chatham-Kent is also home to RM Sothebey's, a vintage automobile auction house, and RM Restorations, a vintage automobile restoration company.
Research and development tax credits in Ontario are more generous than in many of the G7 countries. Combined with federal research and development programs, Ontario's tax credit program can generate 40-60% savings.