Significant contract will see collaborative working by a team of Ricardo and Weifang Shengrui engineers based on site both at Ricardo Shanghai and the UK Midlands Technical Centre - developing a technically advanced and globally competitive 8-speed automatic transmission for manufacture in China
Weifang Shengrui Power Machinery Technology Co Ltd is a successful independently held supplier of engine components to the automakers and engine builders in the domestic Chinese market as well as to the leading manufacturers of Europe. The company has set its strategy of expansion into transmissions and hybrid powertrain components and systems. As a first step in this process it has acquired a development and production licence for an advanced 8-speed automatic transmission concept proposed by leading transmission specialist, Professor Tenberge, director and chair of machine elements in the faculty of mechanical engineering at Chemnitz University, Germany.
The 8AT transmission concept uses a combination of epicyclic and parallel axis gearing in which three simple planetary gears are used together with a single brake and four clutch units.
Key advantages of this new 8-speed transmission concept include simple arrangement requiring no special gear design or manufacture, the potential for excellent shift quality, a compact design providing significant packaging benefits, and flexibility for further adaptation for four-wheel drive or integration with hybrid powertrain systems. The production version of the new Weifang Shengrui 8AT transmission is planned for manufacture in late 2011.
Commenting on this key contract award, Mark Garrett, Ricardo plc executive director, said:
"The award of this contact by Weifang Shengrui Power Machinery Technology Company is yet a further illustration of the significant growth of the Ricardo brand in the Chinese market, where we are now widely considered as being the partner of choice for projects involving the application of the very latest in automotive technology, robust development for mass production, and where collaborative working and technology transfer are key customer objectives. We look forward to working closely with Weifang Shengrui in developing for production a truly advanced and globally competitive transmission system."
NOTES TO EDITORS:
Ricardo plc: With technical centres and offices in the UK, USA, Germany, the Czech Republic, France, Italy, Russia, China, Japan, India and Korea, Ricardo is a leading independent technology provider and strategic consultant to the world's transportation sector industries. The company's engineering expertise ranges from vehicle systems integration, controls, electronics and software development, to the latest driveline and transmission systems and gasoline, diesel, hybrid and fuel cell powertrain technologies. Its customers include the world's major vehicle, engine and transmission manufacturers, tier 1 suppliers and leading motorsport teams. Ricardo is committed to excellence and industry leadership in people, technology and knowledge; approximately 70 per cent of its employees are highly qualified multi-disciplined professional engineers and technicians. A public company, Ricardo plc posted sales of £197.7 million in financial year 2008 and is a constituent of the FTSE techMark 100 index - a group of innovative technology companies listed on the London Stock Exchange. For more information, visit www.ricardo.com.