SAO PAULO – ArvinMeritor Inc.'s operation here is seeking a partner in China for the production of steel wheels.

The Brazilian arm, considered the center of steel wheel development for ArvinMeritor, expects to conclude negotiations with an unnamed company and set up a plant in China within two years.

The planned investment currently is budgeted at $25 million. ArvinMeritor and the Chinese company each would own 50% of the joint venture.

ArvinMeritor already has a factory in Zhenjiang that integrates light-vehicle systems and exhaust systems to manufacture products such as door locks, window regulators, wire harnesses, actuators and exhaust systems. It has commercial-vehicle components plants in Shanghai and Xuzhou.

In addition to the wheel plant, it is expected to set up operations in China to produce sunroofs and suspension systems.

Meanwhile, the Brazilian division forecasts exports of $128 million this year, 50% to the U.S., where its clients include the U.S. Big Three auto makers.