GM and Ford to Cooperate on Joint Development of 9- and 10-Speed Auto Transmissions

It seems that the 8-speed auto gearboxes that are becoming the norm in premium models and are even trickling down to more affordable cars are still not enough.

The New York Times reports that General Motors and Ford are expected to announce an agreement to jointly develop new automatic transmissions specially designed to reduce fuel consumption as early as in November.

According to sources from both carmakers, Ford and GM are already working on 8-, 9- and 10-speed automatic gearboxes for use in their passenger cars and light trucks.

If the two Detroit rivals go ahead with this plan, their sheer size and supply base could give them “huge manufacturing and volume advantages over all the competition” said ND-Automotive analyst Skip Nydam.

This is not the first time America’s two biggest automakers work together on transmission development. A decade ago, hey shared the design and production of a new 6-speed auto for front-wheel drive cars. This program resulted in the Ford 6F and GM 6T70 transmissions, which shared mechanical parts but each had its own electronic controls.

“The biggest benefit in GM and Ford working together is it reduces their investment risk”, IHS Automotive powertrain analyst David Petrovski told the newspaper. Most automakers do not build their own auto gearboxes but buy them from specialists like ZF and pay license fees, thus increasing the total production cost of each vehicle.

Transmissions with a high number of gears allow the engine to operate in its most fuel-efficient rev range, thus reducing fuel consumption and CO2 emissions.

Hyundai has already announced that it will offer a 10-speed auto in its luxury models from 2014 and ZF launched its own 9-speed auto gearbox last year.

The transmission specialist says that the 9HP gearbox, which uses a traditional torque converter instead of a dual-clutch arrangement, reduces consumption up to 16 percent compared to a six-speed auto.

By Andrew Tsaousis



New Ram 1500 EcoDiesel Reportedly Coming Later This Year

The upcoming Ram 1500 EcoDiesel should have a 3.0-liter V6 that produces 260 hp and 442 lb-ft of torque.

Mercedes SUV Boss On Producing The Maybach Ultimate Luxury Concept: “Why Not?”

The Ultimate Luxury Concept won’t hit assembly in the near future, but in the long run, who knows?.

Behold The Glory Of A Corvette Disguised As A Cadillac Disguised As Multiple Chevrolets

The Russian nesting doll of vehicle has a Buy It Now price of $139,995.

Texas Police Troll Bad Parking Job With A Lesson In Staying Between The Lines

The Southlake Police Department suggested a driver practice staying in the lines while coloring, because they can’t do it while parking.

Smart’s Future In America To Be Decided By This Summer

Smart’s future has been secured thanks to a joint venture with Geely, but it will be forced to pull out of the US?.

SVE Builds A Modern, Canyon-Based GMC Syclone With 455 HP

The new Syclone is built by Speciality Vehicle Engineering and costs $39,995 on top of the donor car.

Jeep JT Scrambler Is Fully Functional, Brings Retro Style To Gladiator

The JT Scrambler Concept is based on the Gladiator Rubicon, to which it adds a number of Mopar parts.

2020 Porsche 718 Cayman GT4 Looks Right At Home At The Green Hell

The second-gen Cayman GT4 will feature a 911 GT3-sourced naturally aspirated flat-six.

This BMW E61 5-Series Touring Has A V8 And A Six-Speed Manual

The N62 V8 of this BMW 5-Series Touring can be fettled to over 520 hp.

Hellcat-Powered Mazda MX-5 Miata Is A Tale Of Torque And Haze

Behold, the 707 hp 6.2-liter supercharged V8-powered MX-5 Miata tire devourer.