General Motors has announced that is will soon start the development of new, small capacity petrol engine and dual clutch transmissions with their Chinese partners SAIC. An agreement signed between GM Vice Chairman of Global Product Operations Tom Stephens and SAIC President Chen Hong, will commence this development at GM engineering facility in Detroit and at the Pan Asia Technical Automotive Center (PATAC) in Shanghai.
The new engines will range from 1.0-litre to 1.5-litre capacities and will incorporate a lightweight construction along with direct injection and a turbocharger to boost performance, thus contributing towards better fuel efficiency and overall performance. These engines will power the global market vehicles developed under the GM brand lineage. The most common examples that could benefit from these new engine could be the Chevrolet Beat / Spark, Aveo U-VA / sedan etc. which are GM / Chevrolet’s entry level cars in developing markets.
Also under development alongside these engines will be a front wheel drive transmission which will feature a dry, dual clutch technology. GM claims that this new transmission alone will provide an at least 10% gain in fuel efficiency. It is expected to provide shift comfort equal to a conventional fully automatic transmission, with superior quality, while reducing CO2 emissions. The new engines mated to these transmissions should better fuel efficiency and performance by over 20% as a package, as compared to the current crop of entry level powertrains sold in developing countries.
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