ZF runs a global network of R&D centers from its headquarters in Friedrichshafen (Photo: ZF)

ZF plans to open an Indian technology center next year that will focus on software and mechanical engineering.

The center, which will be located in Hyderabad, will employ 2,500 engineers by 2020. It will open with a smaller staff in January 2017.

The Indian tech center will be part of ZF's global R&D operations, which employ 13,800 engineeers in a number of locations worldwide.

Stefan Sommer, CEO of the German automotive supplier group, said the new facility is part of the company's strategy to localize high-tech products.

"As demand for software engineering grows, we will exponentially increase our capacity to help meet our customers’ growth aspirations," Sommer said in a statement. The tech center also reinforces ZF's commitment to invest in the fast-growing Indian market, he added.

ZF has been in India for more than 30 years. Its ZF TRW division has been operating joint ventures in the country for more than 50 years.