Automotive Technologies for Sustainable Development: Schaeffler Group Presents More Than 20 Innovations for Emission Control and Fuel Economy at the 2008 North American International Auto Show


DETROIT, Jan. 13 -- The Schaeffler Group, a leading manufacturer of rolling bearings, engine and transmissions systems for the automotive industry, has gone on the innovation offensive in order to support sustainable development with more than 20 innovations for the drive train.

"As a system and engineering partner to the automotive industry, we are in a position to offer a wide range of product innovations that have the potential to significantly reduce fuel consumption and CO2 emissions," said Dr. Juergen M. Geissinger, CEO of Schaeffler Group. "Our innovative product and technology portfolio offers technical solutions that range from transmission components and valve train systems to chassis applications, with several of these products offering potential for double-digit percentage savings in fuel consumption."

Considering the demanding emissions regulations and increasing gas prices, Schaeffler Automotive has identified a number of technical innovations to further improve fuel economy for both hybrid and conventional engine vehicles.

The INA UniAir system concept for fully variable valve trains, electro- mechanical cam shaft phasers and mass-reduced balance shafts are just a few innovations from Schaeffler Automotive engineering that work to reduce fuel consumption and lower CO2 emissions in engine applications.

Transmission efficiency can be increased with a LuK dual clutch in dual clutch transmissions (DCT), resulting in 10 to 15 percent less fuel consumption in comparison to conventional automatic transmissions. Hybridization of the twin clutch transmission leads to another 10 percent savings in fuel economy. The Multi Function Torque Converter, also engineered by LuK, offers the feature of idle disconnect, which helps reduce energy waste through de-coupling hydraulic flow during vehicle standstill / idling.

Schaeffler also offers environmentally friendly products for chassis applications. A reduction in fuel consumption of up to 1.5 percent is possible if conventional tapered roller bearings used as wheel bearings in vans, SUVs and light trucks are replaced with FAG's innovative, four-row twin tandem angular contact ball bearings. This concept can also be transferred to the final drive units in passenger cars. Tandem angular contact ball bearings, with only double rows, can be used to replace tapered roller bearings as bearing supports for pinions and differentials, thereby reducing bearing friction by approximately 50 percent. A reduction in fuel consumption of approximately 1.5 percent is also possible in such applications based on standard driving cycles.

To serve the North American automotive market, the Schaeffler Group operates a 78,000-square-foot North American Automotive Tech Center in Troy, Mich. This facility employs 165 engineers and technicians and houses a 30,000- square-foot, state-of-the-art test lab outfitted with multiple test cells capable of performing test simulations for engine and engine components. Schaeffler Group Automotive has headquarters in Fort Mill, S.C. and manufacturing facilities in South Carolina, Missouri, Ohio and Ontario, Canada.

"In technology-driven markets, application specifications and excellent customer service, which implies fast reaction time due to proximity, are key to success," summarizes Geissinger about the strategic aim of the Schaeffler Group.

In order to tailor its innovative products according to the requirements of global customers, the Schaeffler Group has created a worldwide network of R&D centers in recent years. In May 2007, a new facility was inaugurated in Anting/China and, recently at the Tokyo Motor Show, the Schaeffler Group announced the addition of a new R&D center in Japan by 2012.

The Schaeffler Group, with its brands INA, LuK and FAG, employs approximately 63,000 employees at more than 180 locations in 50 countries. The company generates group sales of more than 8.3 billion euros (FY 2006) and ranks among the leading rolling bearing manufacturers and suppliers to the automotive industry worldwide. For more information, please visit www.schaeffler.com.

Source: Schaeffler Group

CONTACT: Gerhard Zaiss, Schaeffler KG, +49-9132-82-2277, Gerhard.Zaiss@schaeffler.com; or

Richard Neilson, Schaeffler Group USA Inc., +1-248-528-4822, Richard.Neilson@schaeffler.com

Web site: www.schaeffler.com/

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