GKN Driveline announced that its order book for electric driveline (eDrive) technologies hit a record £2 billion (US$2.8 billion) by the end of 2017 following a series of significant program wins with major global automakers. Sales, which were previously forecast to rise from £33 million (US$45.7 million) in 2017 to £200 million (US$277.1 million) in 2020, are now expected to increase over eight-fold to £275 million (US$381 million). In 2022, GKN forecasts that eDrive sales will reach £500 million (US$692.8 million).
GKN’s has maintained a long-term commitment to Research and Development. In 2017, the Research and Development expense charged to the income statement was £36 million (US$50 million), with total investment of more than £123 million (US$170.4 million) over the past six years. Through the R&D program, GKN is rapidly bringing full systems capability to the market and is able to offer a range of solutions to meet customer demands, including components, sub-systems and full-systems. GKN will be adding GKN eMotors to its gear and torque management technology portfolio.
As of 31 December 2017, GKN’s order book relating to eDrive was £2 billion following a number of major program wins. Among these are:
GKN’s Multimode eTransmission system is due to launch on a Chinese OEM’s platform across a number of vehicle models from 2018.
GKN is due to supply a semi-integrated electric driveline unit from 2019 for a new vehicle launched by a premium European automaker.
GKN has developed an integrated electric driveline system for a European OEM’s global program that is expected to be first launched in China from next year.
GKN is developing new technologies to improve electric vehicles. The new multi-speed system, the eTwinsterX, unveiled at the 2017 IAA Frankfurt Motor Show brings torque vectoring and improved handling, performance, and efficiency. (Earlier post.) This system will be demonstrated to customers during the 2018 Wintertest in Sweden.
GKN has also agreed a multi-year partnership with Panasonic Jaguar Racing, providing design, manufacturing and engineering services to the Formula E team.
GKN has been working on eDrive and hybrid transmissions for plug-in hybrids and pure electric vehicles since 2002. From supercars to delivery vans, GKN’s eDrive systems are in a broad range of innovative and market-leading vehicles including the Volvo XC90 T8 Twin Engine, the BMW 2 Series Active Tourer, the BMW i8, the Porsche 918 Spyder and the Mitsubishi Outlander—one of the biggest selling plug-in hybrids on the market. In addition to established OEM customers, GKN is working with new entrants into the market that are looking to bring new ideas to mobility and how we travel.
GKN’s electric driveline technologies have been recognized for their innovation through two PACE Awards. The world’s first two-speed electric axle, which enables electric power across a vehicle’s entire speed range, received a PACE award in 2015, which was followed by an award for the co-axial eAxle that delivers electric power to the wheels of the T8 Twin Engine variants across models on Volvo’s SPA platform, including the Volvo XC90, V90, S90 and XC60.