Knorr-Bremse AG

Company Profile



Moosacher Strasse 80, 80809 Munich, Germany

Business Overview

-The Company is a global market leader for developing and manufacturing braking systems and other subsystems for the commercial vehicle and rail industries.

-The Company is organized into the following two divisions:

  • Commercial Vehicle Systems
  • Rail Vehicle Systems

-The Commercial Vehicle Systems division develops and manufactures systems such as braking systems, driver assistance systems, autonomous driving systems, steering systems, torsional vibration dampers, powertrain-related solutions, energy supply and distribution systems and transmission control systems.

-The Company’s commercial vehicle brands include the following:

  • Knorr-Bremse
  • Bendix (air braking systems)
  • Bendix Spicer Foundation Brake LLC (brake components)
  • HASSE & WREDE (dampers)
  • Truck Services (service solutions)
  • GT Emissions Systems (exhaust gas control valves for on and off highway vehicles)
  • Kiepe Electric (electrical components and systems for on and off highway vehicles)

-Sales to OE customers accounted around 72% of the Commercial Vehicle Systems’ revenues in the fiscal year ended December 31, 2022.


    -The Company is listed on the Frankfurt Stock Exchange (As of December 31, 2022)
    Shareholders %
    KB Holding GmbH 59.0
    Other institutional and private investors 41.0
    Total 100.0


    Braking Systems

    -Hydraulic dampers


    Exhaust brake

    Transmission Management
    -Clutch master cylinder
    -Clutch Servo
    -Electronic gear control unit for automated manual transmission
    -Electronic clutch actuator for automated manual transmission

    Air Treatment
    -Air drying
    -Oil separation plus air drying (Oil Separator Cartridge - OSC)
    -Air processing unit (APU)
    -Electronic air control

    Electronic Systems
    -ABS, ASR
    -EBS, CFC

    Steering Systems


    Disc Brakes

    ProTecS Pad Holder Spring System

    Drum Brakes



    1905 Georg Knorr founded the Company in Berlin
    1910-1924 The Company set new technology standards with its air brakes for freight trains. Knorr-Bremse became Europe's leading manufacturer of rail vehicle brakes.
    1922 Development of air brakes for commercial vehicles commenced.
    1931-1939 The Hildebrand Knorr braking system swept aside the competition to become established as the standard braking system for express trains in 17 countries. Ninety percent of all German trucks in the 7-16 ton range were fitted with Knorr braking equipment.
    1945 In the wake of the Second World War, the Company's Berlin plant was expropriated and stripped.
    1945-1953 Development and production of braking equipment was reassumed in West Germany. The Company's headquarters relocated to Munich.
    1960-1980 The Company exercised a decisive influence on the progress in braking technology for the rail and commercial vehicle sectors. With the KE valve Knorr-Bremse set new UIC-standards.
    1985-1993 The AAR DB-60 valve opened the door to the U.S. rail vehicle braking market for the Company. Fundamental restructuring and corporate globalization made the Company one of the world's leading providers of braking technology.
    1996 Pneumatic disc brakes for commercial vehicles were first produced on an industrial scale.
    1997-98 Knorr-Orsan Ticari Arac Sistemleri Ltd, a joint-venture between Knorr-Bremse and Turkey's Orsan Yedek Parca Sanayi ve Ltd, opened a new factory in Corlu. The joint-venture produces diaphragm cylinders and brake components for buses and trucks, mainly for export purposes.
    1998 The commercial vehicle brake division was, until early 1998, a joint-venture with AlliedSignal (now part of Honeywell), in which the Company had a 65% holding. The AlliedSignal/Bendix and the Company's commercial vehicle brake business had a combined turnover of over EUR 511.3m, which represents almost a third of the European market.
    1999 In a further sign of the worldwide consolidation of the brake industry, Knorr-Bremse Systeme fur Nutzfahrzeuge announced that it was to merge with the commercial vehicle brakes group of Robert Bosch GmbH, the large German component manufacturer. Bosch now has a 20% shareholding in Knorr-Bremse Systeme fur Nutzfahrzeuge, with Honeywell and Knorr-Bremse AG holding 20% and 60% respectively. Bosch and Knorr-Bremse are to work together on electronic brake controls for trucks.
    Sep. 1999 The Company and the Japanese automotive and rolling stock company Nabco Ltd, 33% of which is owned by Kobe Steel, agreed to co-operate in the area of commercial vehicle braking systems.
    Dec. 1999 The Company announced it would spend EUR28.1m by 2001 on redeveloping its Berlin-Marzahn site.
    The Company opened a new R&D electronic systems center in Budapest, Hungary. This is part of the company's strategy of reducing costs by transferring many operations from Germany to Hungary. The Company's Hungarian business is the group's largest European production base and exports 85% of its products to Western Europe. The Hungarian subsidiary increased its sales by 20% in 1999.
    Apr. 2000 The Company said that it hoped to have a Japanese alliance in the area of commercial vehicle brakes before the end of 2000.
    The Company announced plans for the construction of a new assembly line for disc brakes at Aldersbach, Germany. This follows the construction of a similar assembly line at the site in 1999 as well as a 2500m2 logistics center, with EUR 7.7m investment. 
    2000 Its Vibration damper unit started its production at new facility in Chicago.
    2001 The Company acquired day-to-day management of JKC Truck Brake Systems, a Japanese joint venture with Bosch Brake Systems. Bosch retains a 20% stake in the company.
    Jan. 2002 Knorr-Bremse takes over from Honeywell its share of joint ventures in Europe, Brazil and the U.S. Bendix Commercial Vehicle Systems becomes a subsidiary of Knorr-Bremse AG.
    2004 -Bendix and Dana Corporation in the U.S. established a joint venture company, Bendix-Spicer Foundation Brake LLC, based in Elyria. Bendix holds a majority stake in the company and is responsible for operational management. The new joint venture enabled Bendix to enter the drum brake segment.
    -In China, the Company joined forces with minority partner Dalian Innovation Parts Manufacturing Co. to set up a joint venture for the production of torsional vibration dampers. The new company goes by the name of Hasse & Wrede CVS Dalian China Ltd.
    Jun. 2005 June 2005, Knorr-Bremse set up a joint venture in India with Tata AutoComp Systems Limited. The Company holds a 74 % share in the new company, with the remaining 26% held by Tata. The newly built plant already launched production. The new plant manufactures a full range of its Commercial Vehicle Systems products, as well as air brake valves, air supply/treatment systems and actuators. The new plant will also be manufacturing automatic slack adjusters and drum brakes in the future. The joint venture will also supply products to selected sites within the Group's network.
    2007 Early in 2007, Hasse & Wrede took over STE SchwingungsTechnik GmbH, the world's third-largest manufacturer of visco-dampers.
    Dec. 2007 The Company and KAMAZ, the biggest truck manufacturer in the CIS states, signed an agreement setting up a joint-venture for the manufacture of complete truck braking systems in the Russian market.
    2008 The Company acquired the SmarTire company (wireless sensing systems for tire pressure monitoring) and the VORAD Technologies division of Eaton (collision warning system).
    2011 The Company and the Chinese manufacturer Chongqing CAFF Automotive Braking & Steering Systems Co. Ltd. founded a joint venture Knorr-Bremse CAFF Systems for Commercial Vehicles Chongqing Ltd. for the production of commercial vehicle brake system and powertrain components.
    Jul. 2014 Knorr-Bremse Asia Pacific (Holding) Ltd. and the Chinese company Dongfeng Electronic Technology Co., Ltd. (DETC) signed an agreement governing the formation of the joint venture company "Knorr-Bremse DETC Commercial Vehicle Braking Technology Co., Ltd."
    Apr. 2019 Acquired commercial vehicle steering business of Hitachi Automotive Systems.
    Jan. 2020 Signed an agreement to acquire R.H. Sheppard Co., Inc., USA, one of the leading manufacturers of steering systems for commercial vehicles on the North American market.
    Jun. 2020 Completed the USD 149.5 million acquisition of R.H. Sheppard Co., Inc.
    Jun. 2021 Celebrated the official start of production of its RCB product IPS (Integral Power Steering) at the new Knorr-Bremse Commercial Vehicle Systems (KBT) plant in Chachoengsao, east of Bangkok, Thailand.
    Apr. 2022 Will acquire shares representing a 20% stake in each of Knorr-Bremse Systeme für Nutzfahrzeuge GmbH and Knorr-Bremse Commercial Vehicle Systems Japan Ltd., the two Bosch joint ventures. Upon payment of EUR 360 million, it will wholly owned subsidiaries both company.
    Jun. 2022 The Company fully withdrew 50% shares in Knorr-Bremse Kama for Commercial Vehicles OOO, based in Naberezhnye Chelny (Russia), to PJSC KAMAZ, which now becomes the sole owner.
    Aug. 2022 The Company opened Knorr-Bremse Commercial Vehicle Systems China (Suzhou) R&D Center and Suzhou Production Base.

    Supplemental Information 1