German tire manufacturer Continental, a world-leading auto parts provider, kicked off the construction of a two wheel tire plant in the eastern Chinese city of Hefei on Friday. The plant, expected to be put into operation in December next year, will mainly manufacture tires for mountain bikes and racing bikes for China and some other Asian countries and regions, Constantin Batsch, head of Continental\'s Two Wheel Tyre business group, said at the ground-breaking ceremony. The new plant will be able to manufacture 1.7 million pieces of bike tires a year in its early stages, he said. No further details, such as the amount of investment, were revealed. The Hanover-headquartered company finished the construction of a plant producing passenger car tires in Hefei in May this year with an investment of 185 million euros (240 million U.S. dollars). It can manufacture 4 million pieces of tires a year in its early period, and the annual output will eventually hit 16 million.