GM and Ford to Team Up on Fuel-Efficient Transmissions

Posted at 4:12 AM, Apr 15, 2013
and last updated 2013-04-15 04:12:29-04

DETROIT, Mich. (REUTERS) – The two largest automakers in the world have agreed to jointly develop a new line of nine- and ten-speed automatic transmissions to boost fuel economy and performance.

According to Reuters, this marks the third time in the last decade that the two automakers have collaborated on transmissions.  The effort allows GM and Ford to bring the transmissions to market more quickly and at a lower cost than if they worked alone.

Engineering teams for both companies have already started initial designs.

The U.S. auto industry is required to boost fuel economy by 2025, when U.S. government standards mandate that automakers show a corporate average fuel economy (CAFE) of 54.5 miles per gallon.

That translates to about 39 mpg in real world driving, or nearly two thirds higher than the average fuel economy for the 2012 model year vehicles.  The Environmental Protection Agency projects that, on average, 2012 vehicles got around 23.8 mpg.

Original reporting by Deepa Seetharaman