CHICAGO Ford Motor Co.
and General Motors Co. will jointly develop new-generation
nine- and 10-speed automatic transmissions for cars, crossover
vehicles, sport utility vehicles (SUVs) and trucks.
"The goal is to keep hardware
identical in the Ford and GM transmissions. This will maximize
parts commonality and give both companies economy of scale,"
said Craig Renneker, Fords chief engineer for
transmission, driveline component and pre-program engineering.
Each company will manufacture the transmissions in their own
plants, using common components.
The transmissions will have both
front- and rear-wheel-drive variants, GM said.
"Engineering teams from GM and
Ford have already started initial design work on these new
transmissions," Jim Lanzon, GMs vice president of global
transmission engineering, said. "We expect these new
transmissions to raise the standard of technology, performance
and quality for our customers while helping drive fuel economy
improvements into both companies future product
It is the third time in the past
decade that Detroit-based GM and Dearborn, Mich.-based Ford
have collaborated to develop transmissions. They previously
teamed up to build six-speed front-wheel-drive transmissions,
delivering more than 8 million transmissions worldwide. Ford
installs the six-speed transmissions in its Fusion, Edge,
Escape and Explorer models, while GM uses them in its Chevrolet
Malibu, Traverse, Equinox and Cruze vehicles.
"By jointly sharing the development of these two new
families of transmissions, both GM and Ford will be able to
more efficiently use our respective manpower resources to
develop additional future advanced transmissions and bring them
to market faster than if we worked alone," Lanzon said.