Rivalries between car companies run deep, especially when they’re sharing the same American turf. So it’s somewhat surprising, if not sensible, that General Motors and Ford are coming together in order build the best fuel-efficient automatic transmission out there. At least, that’s the goal.
The two companies announced yesterday that they’ve got their engineers working on a team to design nine- and 10-speed transmissions that will go into many new vehicles.
It’s all about making the engines work less, and keeping the shifting smooth so that customers/drivers don’t notice a thing.
Ford and GM will save million of dollars in this joint effort, reports the Associated Press, and use that extra money on stuff like fancy interiors and the extras that go into setting cars apart. The companies haven’t said what this project will save, but did admit that it’ll cost millions to develop the new transmission.
“While we still can be really competitive, we can collaborate where it makes sense,” said General Motors Co. spokesman Dan Flores. “We will still fight every day in the marketplace over every sale.”
The process has already begun, and there’s no word on when the new transmissions will debut. When the two automakers collaborated before, on designing six-speed transmissions, the process took about three years.
Ah, teamwork. My sixth grade social studies teacher would totally approve of this exercise (while refusing to listen to any complaints of, “But I work better on my own, I swear!”
GM, Ford to collaborate on new transmissions [Associated Press]