Mahle Group, Stuttgart, Germany, one of the world’s largest automotive suppliers, has announced its acquisition of transmission specialist ZG-Zahnräder und Getriebe GmbH, Eching, Germany. Through this acquisition, the group stated that it hopes to expand its powertrain expertise to include the transmission, a decision driven by the trend in electric vehicles toward integrated drive systems.
The expansion of its powertrain expertise is expected to allow Mahle to tap into additional development competence in this field, putting it in a position to offer its customers integrated systems solutions for the powertrain from a single source, including transmission design. Dr Jörg Stratmann, Chairman of the Management Board and CEO of Mahle, stated, “The acquisition is another important step in the expansion of Mahle’s product portfolio and on its path to become a systems provider for all powertrain technologies.”
Integrated drive systems are said to offer some advantages over individual modules, such as the drive motor, transmission, or power electronics. Their components are reported to be better coordinated, their construction can be more compact, and they can also be used more flexibly in different vehicle types. ZG-Zahnräder und Getriebe, which was founded in 2008 as a spin-off from the Technical University of Munich, offers particular expertise in state-of-the-art gearing technology, with its approximately forty employees supporting auto manufacturers and suppliers throughout the development process.
The Mahle Group’s product portfolio addresses crucial issues relating to powertrain and air conditioning technology, both for drives with combustion engines and for e-mobility, and the company states that its products are fitted in at least every second vehicle worldwide. In 2017, the group generated sales of approximately €12.8 billion and employed roughly 78,000 in more than thirty countries across 170 production locations, as well as sixteen major research and development centres.