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Magna forms e-powertrain joint venture in China

Canadian automotive parts supplier Magna International Inc. has entered into a joint venture agreement with Huayu Automotive Systems Co. Ltd. to produce an electric-drive powertrain system for a German automaker.


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October 23, 2017 by Canadian Plastics

Canadian automotive parts supplier Magna International Inc. has entered into a joint venture agreement with Huayu Automotive Systems Co. Ltd. (HASCO), a subsidiary of China’s SAIC Motor, to produce an electric-drive powertrain system for a German automaker.

In a statement, Aurora, Ont.-based Magna said that both partners will give the JV “full support” to develop localized core competencies in terms of market development, R&D, advanced manufacturing, and key parts supply such as gearboxes, inverter components and e-motors.

“The new-energy vehicle (NEV) market will continue to grow at a rapid speed in China. With this trend, SAIC Motor is developing the New Four Modernization strategy focusing on car electrification, connectivity, intelligence, and sharing economy,” Mr. Chen Zhixin, President of SAIC Motor and Vice Chairman of HASCO, said. “The establishment of the JV, a strong combination of HASCO and Magna’s strength to initiate cooperation in NEV electrified powertrain systems, has been a milestone for HASCO to develop its core competencies in the field of key new-energy-related components, as well as a critical measure to strengthen the New Four Modernization strategy for SAIC.”

“China is the number-one growth market in the world, and they have been clear about their intended leadership in bringing hybrid and electric vehicles to market,” said Don Walker, Magna CEO. “Combining strengths with HASCO helps position Magna and the joint venture for future growth and success.”

Magna has a history of partnerships with automakers. In 2009, the company announced a vehicle-development partnership with Ford Motor Company to introduce a zero-emission lithium-ion battery electric vehicle (BEV) – this became the Ford Focus BEV, which entered the market in 2011 and is still available today. Magna was responsible for providing the electric motor and electronic control module, and also played a role in the engineering to integrate the electric propulsion system and other new systems into the vehicle architecture.

Additionally since 2012 Magna has supplied Volvo with the electrified rear axle drive system (eRAD) featured on the Volvo V60 and S60 plug-in hybrid models. Magna’s eRAD system complements a traditional gas- or diesel-engine front-wheel-drive powertrain with an independent electric powertrain to power the rear wheels.  Magna received the Volvo Cars Quality Excellence (VQE) Award earlier this year for its role in supplying these systems.