Cross-town rivals team up to design more efficient driveline components.

Sometimes your enemy is your enemy. Other times your enemy is your friend. This is the latter.

It costs a considerable amount of money to develop transmissions these days, especially when the cog swappers have to fit in all sorts of vehicles – subcompacts to full-size pickups – and suitable for different duty applications.

GM and Ford recognize this and will play nice to develop new nine and ten-speed automatics. The new transmissions could see roads in 2017 and will definitely use a conventional torque convertor approach.

Nine-speed transmissions will find homes in front-wheel drive vehicles while ten-speed slushboxes will send power to the rear wheels.

All of this is an attempt at increased fuel economy as automakers try to make their vehicles as efficient as possible. With many believing not much more can be done with internal combustion engines to make significant efficiency improvements, OEMs are now attacking other driveline items with renewed focus.

[Source: Ford, GM via Automobile Mag]

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