Saurer (Graziano Transmissioni) Business Report FY2006

Business Highlights

-The Company started production of gearboxes for the new Aston Martin V8, which has been very successful on the market. In the automotive sector two other important development programs were agreed: the automatic and manual gearboxes of the new Audi R8 high-performance sports car, and the rear differential of the Maserati Quattroporte Automatica. Both programs will enter production in 2007.

-Beside its successful development projects for Aston Martin and Maserati, the Company concluded the prototype development phase of a global all-wheel drive platform, Epsilon, for General Motors. Production is expected to start in 2008. Other projects for new transmission and gear assemblies are in progress with Ferrari and Lamborghini.

Presence in Asia
In 2006, Production facilities and market presence in Asia were significantly increased: the factory extension in Delhi (India) started production in August, and the Company has started operation in Suzhou (China) where it is producing axles for Linide fork-lift trucks.


R&D Structure - Transmission System
Engineering Department
As Transmission System is responsible for the development and the production of transmission components and systems for automotive applications, it offers its know-how to Customers in different fields of the automotive driveline engineering. Examples are:
- synchronizers with single, double and triple cone for automotive, agricultural and industrial transmissions
- transmissions/transaxles for sport cars
- differentials and angle drives for 2WD and 4WD/AWD
- powershift for gearboxes
- axles for a new generation of lower floor city buses
- transaxles for utility, golf carts and local-transport vehicles
- axles and transmissions for construction equipment
- axles, powershift transmissions and transaxles for forklift trucks
- transmissions for zero-emission vehicles

The Engineering Dept offers complete services in the filed of product development, from the concept to the drawings, from the prototype to the testing, up to the technical approval for production.  The segment is equipped with software dedicated to the cylindrical gear sizing (ISO/AGMA) and bevel gears to optimize the profiles relevant to the transmission error reduction, and N.V.H.

Testing Department
Transmission System' Testing Department has been recognized by the 窶廴inistry for Universities and Scientific Technological Research窶 in the register of the 窶弃rivate External Laboratories, which are highly qualified and authorized to carry out research with the application for small and medium industries.

The Department is enclosed within the Cascine Vica plant area and covers a total surface area of about 2300 sq. meters. The following operations are performed:

- Assembling prototype mechanical units for power transmissions and analyzing prototypes submitted to tests on benches or on test grounds.
 -Testing to validate plans or designs also for customers: check tests and operational setting up, life span of transmissions and structural elements, recording performance by means of specifically designed testing equipment.
 -Performing noise and vibration tests according to FFT analysis in frequency and with loaded and unloaded order tracking (on the actual vehicles or on the test benches)
 -Examining and evaluating competitor components according to technical and structural solutions.
 -Performing checks to fulfill design requirements on production units.
 -Performing maneuverability analyses of the gearboxes on the benches and on actual vehicles.

Electronic & System Engineering Department
The Department has been operating since 2000; it is located in the Prototype and Test Department.

The main purpose of this new department is to develop systems in which the electronic controls drive all or some actuators, consisting of mechanical components produced by Transmission System.

The new products studied and manufactured by Transmission System can be developed with this system, without assistance from external organizations.

Today, Transmission System has some projects in progress for utility and zero-emission vehicles such as forklifts and the passenger cars.