GKN’s BMW i8 e-Axle Wins Automotive News PACE Award

The maker of the BMW i8 two-speed e-axle has been recognized once again for its work.

GKN Automotive has been honored with a coveted Automotive News PACE award for its two-speed eAxle technology, found on the BMW i8 plug-in hybrid.

The Automotive News PACE award is known around the world as the industry benchmark for automotive innovation.

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“The two-speed eAxle technology is a great example our ability to push automotive engineering forward, integrating complete system expertise with software and tuning capabilities into a new generation of hybrid vehicles,” said Andrew Reynolds Smith, CEO of GKN Automotive. “It takes a tremendous amount of teamwork to bring leading-edge technology to the market, and this award is a reflection of the great cooperation between our global team and BMW, enabling us to deliver innovation for its ground breaking vehicle.”

The GKN eAxle gives the electric drive motor the capability to ensure no compromise in acceleration, assisted top speed and pure electric range, improving both driving dynamics and CO2 emissions, states the company. It is the first application to enable electric power to boost the vehicle’s performance across its entire speed range as previously, electric and axle-split hybrids have used a single-speed transmission, which disconnects at certain speeds to prevent the motor from over spinning.

“Car manufacturers are not only looking to make their vehicles more efficient; they want to create new driving experiences,” Peter Moelgg, GKN Automotive President of Engineering said. “Our expertise in driveline efficiency and electric drive systems is helping to bring a new generation of electric drive vehicles to life. We are proud that the PACE judges have recognized that with the two-speed eAxle.”