Joint Venture with Saab Automobile AB to develop electric all-wheel-drive and hybrid driveline systems
DETROIT, Sept. 24 - American Axle & Manufacturing Holdings, Inc. (AAM), which is traded as AXL on the NYSE and is a global Tier 1 supplier of driveline and drivetrain systems and related components for the automotive industry, today announced it has formed a joint venture with Saab Automobile AB (Saab), a global premium car maker. The new company, e-AAM Driveline Systems AB (e-AAM), will engineer, develop and commercialize electric all-wheel-drive (e-AWD) and hybrid driveline systems for passenger cars and crossover vehicles. e-AAM systems will be designed to improve fuel efficiency, reduce CO2 emissions and provide all-wheel-drive capability utilizing torque vectoring for vehicle stability.
The corporate headquarters of e-AAM will be in Trollhattan, Sweden. The joint venture, which will be majority controlled by AAM, will commence operations on October 1, 2010. e-AAM will leverage existing Saab and AAM technology, engineering facilities, laboratories and testing equipment to expedite development time while minimizing cost. e-AAM will develop and market an innovative electric all-wheel drive system in a full-service package. The electric all-wheel drive system can be easily integrated into existing platforms, minimizing vehicle architecture changes.
e-AAM's technology has received strong interest in the marketplace. e-AAM systems will be featured in the next generation of Saab vehicles beginning in 2012. In addition, e-AAM will be showcasing its expertise and advanced products to other global OEMs.
"AAM is pleased to be launching this exciting new business opportunity with Saab," said AAM Co-Founder, Chairman & CEO Richard E. Dauch. "e-AAM will leverage the outstanding competencies of both our companies in the development of state-of-the-art electric and hybrid driveline systems needed by global OEMs to improve the fuel efficiency, ride and handling performance and overall capability of their products. The new and innovative products to be engineered by e-AAM, as well as the new customers to be served by this joint venture, solidly support AAM's strategic initiative to expand and diversify our business."
"For Saab, the announcement of this partnership is a major step towards a successful future as an independent company," said Saab Automobile CEO Jan Ake Jonsson. "Saab is currently class-leading with its innovative Cross Wheel Drive system (XWD). The new electric all-wheel-drive system will secure a leadership position in its next generation Saabs. This joint venture will bring together Saab's world-class vehicle engineering expertise and AAM's extensive engineering, production and marketing capabilities, which leads to a powerful combination."
Saab, or Svenska Aeroplan Aktiebolaget (Swedish Aircraft Company), was founded in 1937 as an aircraft manufacturer and revealed its first prototype passenger car 10 years later after the formation of the Saab Car Division. In 1990, Saab Automobile AB was created as a separate company, jointly owned by the Saab Scania Group and General Motors, and became a wholly-owned GM subsidiary in 2000. In February 2010, Spyker Cars N.V. of the Netherlands, acquired the company from GM as an independently-run business.
Saab cars reflect the brand's unique Scandinavian design ethic, which is fused with its aircraft engineering heritage. The company is a global premium car maker with a distinguished history of innovation. It is recognized for its pioneering role in turbocharging, as well as occupant safety and the introduction of flex-fuel technology through Saab BioPower. Saab Automobile AB currently employs approximately 3,800 staff in Sweden, where it operates world-class production and technical development facilities at its headquarters in Trollhattan, 70 km north of Gothenburg.
AAM is a publicly traded company on the NYSE (Symbol: AXL) and a world leader in the manufacture, engineering, design and validation of driveline and drivetrain systems and related components and modules, chassis systems and metal-formed products for trucks, sport utility vehicles, passenger cars and crossover utility vehicles. In addition to locations in the United States (Indiana, Michigan, New York, Ohio, and Pennsylvania), AAM also has offices or facilities in Brazil, China, Germany, India, Japan, Luxembourg, Mexico, Poland, South Korea, Thailand and the United Kingdom.
For more information
American Axle & Manufacturing
Christopher M. Son
Investor Relations and Corporate Communications
Saab Automobile AB
Executive Director Communications
+46 (0)520 279797
Or visit the AAM website at www.aam.com or the Saab media website at media.saab.com
SOURCE American Axle & Manufacturing Holdings, Inc.
Web Site: www.aam.com