Mazda says it will construct a transmission plant in Thailand’s Chonburi province that will have an annual capacity of 400,000 units.

The facility, slated to commence production in early 2016, is located about 3.1 miles (5 km) from Mazda’s AutoAlliance Thailand assembly plant and will build automatic gearboxes for Mazda production facilities around the world, the auto maker says.

Mazda President and CEO Takashi Yamanouchi says in a statement the plant will help the auto maker achieve its aggressive growth plan.

“Mazda is establishing global production footprints in order to achieve our goal of an annual global sales volume of 1.7 million units by fiscal year ending March 2016,” he says. “The Nakanoseki district of Hofu Plant will remain the chief production facility for transmission, but we have decided to establish a second transmission plant (in Thailand).”

Yamanouchi says the facility will enable Mazda to respond to changing consumer demands in a “flexible and timely manner.”

The Hiroshima, Japan-based auto maker also is constructing a new assembly plant in Salamanca, Mexico, which is scheduled to go online in 2014 and have annual capacity of 140,000 units.