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Mercedes-Benz unveils its revamped G-Class

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The all-new G-Class makes its public debut at the Detroit auto show in G550 form. Completely redeveloped and fitted with a 4.0-liter V8 biturbo gasoline engine offering 427ps and 450 lb-ft of torque at 2,000rpm to 4,750rpm, despite near-identical looks to its predecessor plenty has changed for the Mercedes-Benz SUV.


Ford’s F150 pickup gets its first diesel motor

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Developed by the powertrain team behind the 6.7-liter Power Stroke engine for super duty trucks, the all-new 3.0-liter V6 Power Stroke unit promises 250ps, 440 lb-ft of torque, and an anticipated 5175kg of towing capacity.


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In light of Fisker's solid-state battery breakthrough and claims of a one minute charge time, will this electric vehicle technology development kick-start mass BEV uptake? 

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How VW Group’s new MQ281 transmission is created

This accelerated footage shows the entire production process of the MQ281 transmission, at the Seat component plant in El Prat de Llobregat, Barcelona

 

The OEM has installed POV cameras at different stages of the manufacturing process at the Seat component plant in El Prat de Llobregat, Barcelona, where VW Group’s new MQ281 gearbox is manufactured. This footage shows the entire production process in an accelerated video that lasts 60 seconds.

Every 27 seconds, a new unit leaves the plant, which ranks first in manufacturing time for VW Group’s five-speed manual gearboxes; more specifically, one hour and 41 minutes in total.

The plant has manufactured over 13.5 million of the MQ200 model transmissions. These units are used in 29 VW Group models and are exported worldwide. In 2016 a total of 661,277 units were manufactured, a figure that is expected to slightly increase this year.

Manufacturing the gearboxes requires smelting 15,000 tonnes of aluminum every year, the amount used to make 220 commercial airliners. The ingots are loaded into kilns at nearly 700°C for smelting. Several injection molding machines solidify the molten aluminum into a rough part in 20 seconds.

Each gearbox is made of 174 parts. Annual in-house production at the Seat factory totals more than 18 million parts, including shafts, gearwheels and timing mechanisms.

Parts manufactured in-house undergo heat treatment to ensure their durability, and can remain up to 14 hours at a temperature of 900°C. This process enables the service life of a gearbox to be multiplied by 5,000, which is estimated to be an average of 250,000 kilometers. During its service life, 500,000 gear changes on average are performed.

At the facility 95% of the aluminum used gets recycled, as well as the majority of the oils and other consumeables used in the manufacturing process.

More than 500 machines and robots are involved in the manufacturing process of a transmission.

 

8 March 2017

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