General Motors plans to invest $71 million into two Ohio manufacturing facilities, including $39 million at its Toledo transmission plant and $32 million at its Defiance casting plant. Work will begin immediately at the two locations. The Toledo investment will be used to upgrade and enhance the production of GM’s eight-speed rear-wheel-drive transmission, and the Defiance investment will be used to prepare the facility for future engine casting components work. The investments will enable the company to retain 240 jobs.
Can-Eng Furnaces International Ltd. received a contract from a Tier 1 manufacturer of forged suspension components for a system that will produce lightweight forged-aluminum parts for passenger vehicles. The system includes a pre-forging rotary-hearth aluminum heating furnace, water quench and continuous aging furnace. The equipment will be integrated into an automated forging cell that includes specialized material-handling components and advanced controls.
Viking Analytics, a Swedish provider of advanced analytics solutions for predictive operations, and Bharat Forge Kilsta, a Sweden-based supplier of forged components, began collaborating in a data-driven production quality project. In the coming months, Viking Analytics will prepare an assessment of the data collected by sensors installed in the oven that heats steel rods used in the production of crankshafts and front axle beams for heavy-duty vehicles. In Bharat Forge Kilsta’s Karlskoga plant, the forged steel is first heated in an induction oven, whose temperature varies according to different steel grades and products. If a disruption occurs, the oven must be adjusted to keep the metal at a constant temperature. This process is currently performed manually, which sometimes causes human-related deviations in the proper temperature-level records.
ArcelorMittal announced its intention to build an electric-arc furnace (EAF) steelmaking facility at AM/NS Calvert in Alabama. Once completed, the planned facility will be capable of producing 1.5 million tons of steel slabs annually for the hot-strip mill. It will also produce a broad spectrum of steel grades required for Calvert’s end-user markets. Construction is expected to take 24 months, and the new facility is anticipated to create 300 new jobs.
American Axle & Manufacturing (AAM) has developed a new independent rear drive axle (IRDA) for GM’s full-size SUVs, including the 2021 Chevrolet Tahoe, Chevrolet Suburban, GMC Yukon, GMC Yukon Denali and Cadillac Escalade. AAM and GM worked together to replace the prior-generation axle with a newly designed three-mount independent rear drive axle module. The design features a lightweight aluminum carrier housing and a low-offset hypoid gear set to provide improved efficiency and better noise, vibration and harshness performance.
American Axle & Manufacturing’s (AAM) Electric Drive Technology will power Jaguar’s first pure-electric model, the I-PACE. AAM supplies both front and rear e-Drive units, which together deliver a total of 294 kW of AWD power and 700 Nm of torque. The system leverages AAM’s experience in the design, analysis and processing of geared mechanical systems to engineer compact, quiet and efficient drive units.
According to a report, Spain’s Alcorta Forging Group will open its first U.S. manufacturing operations and regional headquarters in Marysville, Ohio. The 100-year-old company, which develops and manufactures automotive components, will invest $15 million and create 50 new jobs. The 150,000-square-foot forging and manufacturing facility will be completed in three phases and include state-of-the-art machinery and equipment. Under the current uncertain circumstances, Alcorta will move forward with its pre-construction activities while remaining on hold for the construction launch.
Germany’s ZF Friedrichshafen AG successfully completed the acquisition of commercial-vehicle technology supplier WABCO of Switzerland. WABCO’s integration into ZF unites two industry leaders behind a shared vision to create a customer-focused powerhouse to advance commercial-vehicle technology. The combined product portfolio now encompasses conventional and electric drive and chassis components; a comprehensive suite of sensors; and fully integrated, advanced braking, steering and driver-assistance systems for OEMs seeking technological differentiation for their new vehicle platforms.
Dana Incorporated started production of its Spicer Electrified eS9000r e-Axle for Class 4 and 5 commercial fleet applications. The e-Axle will be available for ordering in the third quarter of 2020. Dana is the first to market with this e-Axle classification in North America and has the in-house capability to manufacture all components of the system, including the gears, axle, motor and inverter. Designed for medium-duty truck and bus applications, the e-S9000r is based on the proven and widely specified Spicer S110, S111 and S130 rear-drive axle platforms and is engineered as a fully integrated e-Axle, including a gearbox and motor.
BorgWarner Inc. and Delphi Technologies PLC entered into a definitive transaction agreement under which Auburn Hills, Mich.-based BorgWarner will acquire Delphi Technologies for approximately $3.3 billion. The acquisition will strengthen BorgWarner’s power electronics products, capabilities and scale. Combining with London-based Delphi Technologies will enable BorgWarner to maintain flexibility across combustion, hybrid and electric propulsion. The combined company will serve light- and commercial-vehicle manufacturers and the aftermarket.
Check out the October 2020 issue of FORGE, featuring our cover story on "Fever Screening and Forging Quality". Other features include "Forging with Hybrid Steel", "FutureForge in Scotland: The Goldilocks Effect", and much more.