Posted: April 15, 2013 at 1:18 am
Ford Motor Co. and General Motors Co. have agreed to co-develop a new family of 9- and 10-speed automatic transmissions.
The gearboxes will be designed for front- and rear-drive vehicles that include cars, crossover vehicles, SUVs and trucks. The companies aim to reduce manufacturing costs by using identical hardware. Each will use its own software to tailor shift characteristics to suit its vehicles.
GM and Ford have partnered twice before on transmission designs. Their co-developed family of six-speed automatics for front-drive vehicles, for example, has been used in more than 8 million vehicles worldwide, including such models as the Ford Fusion, Edge and Explorer and Chevrolet Cruze, Malibu and Equinox.
The companies did not immediately indicate when the first of the new transmissions will go into production, but they say they have already begun initial design work. They also say that collaborating will bring their designs to market faster and at lower cost