WABCO's OptiDrive Automated Manual Transmission Provides 5% Improvement in Fuel Economy

WABCO's OptiDrive automated manual transmission has been shown to improve fuel economy by 5% in commercial vehicles.

WABCO Holdings Inc., a global technology leader and tier-one supplier to the commercial vehicle industry, announces that its OptiDrive system, a breakthrough in automated manual transmission technology, continues to gain global acceptance among major manufacturers of transmissions, trucks and buses.

Superbly engineered as a modular system, OptiDrive reduces by 50% the development time required for transmission and original equipment manufacturers to apply it to their respective product platforms. OptiDrive received an Automotive News PACE award in 2010 for product innovation.

WABCO’s OptiDrive improves vehicle control and reduces fuel consumption by as much as 5% through optimized gear shifting. OptiDrive also improves driver effectiveness, particularly among less experienced drivers, by automating and optimizing gear shifting in 5- to 18-speed manual transmissions. It enhances vehicle safety by freeing drivers from frequent shifting, allowing them to further concentrate on traffic conditions. Less shifting also helps improve fuel economy and leaves an environmentally cleaner footprint.

“OptiDrive exemplifies our technology leadership and it differentiates WABCO as we are the industry’s only independent manufacturer of compressed air-powered automated manual transmission systems,” says Nikhil Varty, WABCO Vice President, Americas. “OptiDrive’s highly modular and flexible adaptation is also a major advancement for makers of transmissions and vehicles as it saves significant development time. Since 2008 we have a growing list of globally operating customers that have adopted OptiDrive systems in series production.”

Among the several major original equipment manufacturers using OptiDrive technology are China National Heavy Truck Corporation, one of China’s largest producers of heavy duty trucks, Shaanxi Fast Gear Company, the world’s largest manufacturer of heavy duty transmissions, and Ashok Leyland, India’s second largest manufacturer of commercial vehicles.