General Motors has begun construction of a facility for advanced race engine design and development, as well as an electric motor laboratory and gear center. The new GM Performance and Racing Center (GMPRC) is located next to the GM Powertrain Engineering headquarters in Pontiac, Mich.
Engineers and technicians from GM’s race engineering center in Wixom, Mich. will move to the new facility in mid-2015. The relocation will centralize North American powertrain engineering expertise for production engines as well as advanced and racing propulsion programs. GM said that consolidating the engineering to one large space is an excellent way to develop race-bred engineers whether they work on production or performance vehicles.
The move will include about 100 employees who work on powertrain racing development, electric motors and in the gear center. The new building is expected to be opened and in use by mid-2015 and completed by early 2016.
The GMPRC is part of a $200-million investment GM announced last January to build a new 138,000 sq.ft. test wing. At that time, the company announced work at four remote locations would consolidate on the Pontiac campus, helping to reduce development timing for GM’s next-generation advanced propulsion technologies.
Engineers at the GMPRC will work on powertrain-related projects for GM’s involvement in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series, NASCAR Nationwide Series, NASCAR Camping World Truck Series, Verizon IndyCar Series, TUDOR United SportsCar Championship, Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge, Pirelli World Challenge, NHRA (COPO Camaro Program) and Global Rally Cross.
The electric motor lab produces prototype electric motors and validates manufacturing processes used in the production of electric and hybrid vehicle motors. Electric motor engineering, design and validation are core competencies for GM in the development, sourcing and manufacturing of electric vehicles and their major components.
The gear center supports design, manufacturing processes, inspection techniques and testing of gears used primarily in the next generation of GM transmissions.
The GM Powertrain World Headquarters is a 450,000 ft2 facility. Engineers at the facility design and develop engines, transmissions, hybrid and electric powertrains, and fuel cell technologies. Advanced tools within the campus provide engineers the ability to test all elements of these propulsion systems under extreme conditions, including cold ambient temperatures, high rpm, and repetitive starting and stopping, to assure excellent durability, reliability and quality.