Ford, GM to join forces to develop new transmission technology

Monday 01st, October 2012 / 11:02
Ford, GM to join forces to develop new transmission technology

There’s nothing wrong with a little friendly rivalry among PowerBlock fans when it comes to representing your favorite American automaker. We read through our facebook, twitter and myPowerBlock feeds and see that you all are definitely proud of the brands you support.

Now imagine if two American auto brands joined forces to create something awesome to even the playing field, or even better – give foreign auto makers something (else) to envy.

According to The New York Times, General Motors and Ford are expected to announce an agreement that details a joint effort to develop a new automatic transmission designed for improved fuel economy.

Over the past couple of years, both companies have introduced new technologies that have showcased improved gas mileage without compromising on power, and now two mainstream rivals are working together to offer more to consumers.

The story says the deal will allow GM and Ford engineers to study and possibly share a variety of future transmission designs, looking ahead at manufacturing alliance. The official plans will be announced next month.

The idea is to cut down on manufacturing costs and have volume advantages over other competitions, the New York Times reported. “The biggest benefit in GM and Ford working together is it reduces their investment risk,” said David Petrovski in the story.

Petrovski is a powertrain analyst at IHS automotive. He says in the story that as automakers replace existing engines with smaller turbocharged versions the use less fuel, the engines typically have to operate at higher speeds to produce maximum output. The story gives the example of the 3- and 4- speed automatics I the 80s to 5- and 6-speeds in the 90s. The early 200s also saw a jump to 7- and 8-speed transmissions, and just recently, Chrysler is releasing a 9-speed automatic in 2013.

What do you think about how this will impact the future of American autos? Tell us what you think by leaving a comment on our facebook page.



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