Ford Motor Company and General Motors Corporation have signed an agreement under which both companies will jointly develop an all-new generation of advanced-technology nine- and 10-speed automatic transmissions for cars, crossovers, SUVs and trucks.
The new transmissions, to be built in both front- and rear-wheel-drive variants, will improve vehicle performance and increase fuel economy.
The collaboration enables both automakers to design, develop, engineer, test, validate and deliver these new transmissions for their vehicles faster and at lower cost than if each company worked independently.
“Engineering teams from GM and Ford have already started initial design work on these new transmissions,” said Jim Lanzon, GM vice president of global transmission engineering. “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 portfolios.”
This new agreement marks the third time in the past decade that GM and Ford have collaborated on transmissions. These collaborative efforts have enabled both companies together to deliver more than 8 million durable, high-quality six-speed front-wheel-drive transmissions to customers around the globe. Ford has the six-speed transmissions in the Ford Fusion family sedan, the Ford Edge crossover and Ford Escape and Explorer SUVs, while GM uses the same transmission in the Chevrolet Malibu, Chevrolet Traverse, Chevrolet Equinox and Chevrolet Cruze.
“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, Ford’s chief engineer for transmission and driveline component and pre-program engineering. “However, we will each use our own control software to ensure that each transmission is carefully matched to the individual brand-specific vehicle DNA for each company.”
“This agreement provides tremendous benefits for both companies, and it will pay big dividends for our customers and shareholders,” added Lanzon. “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.”