CROTHERSVILLE, Ind., Dec. 12, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Aisin Drivetrain, Inc. (ADI), a business unit of Aisin Seiki, the world's largest automotive transmission supplier, today announced that it has begun shipping new six speed automatic transmissions manufactured for light and medium-duty commercial Ram trucks. The new six-speed transmission is designed for Class 3, 4 and 5 diesel trucks, according to ADI President Scott Turpin.
A celebration at ADI, one of several Aisin manufacturing plants located about 75 miles south of Indianapolis, was attended by Chrysler executives Dr. Mircea Gradu, vice president, Powertrain; Ed Perosky, director, Engineering; and Mark Champine, platform director, Transmission & Driveline Powertrain. Other attendees included local dignitaries, and Aisin employees and executives, including Aisin Seiki Chairman, Kanshiro Toyoda, visiting from Japan.
"It's always good to see Mr. Toyoda visit Jackson County," said a smiling Jim Plump, executive director, Jackson County Industrial Development Corp. "Because it usually means good news!"
Indeed, the new Chrysler program has meant a $15 million investment in equipment and upgrades at the 350,000 square-foot plant, and more than 100 new jobs.
Turpin said the Aisin – Chrysler business relationship began about 30 years ago when Aisin Group supplied 5-speed transmissions for the Jeep Cherokee.
"We're excited to add this new six-speed automatic transmission to our product group here at ADI," says Turpin. "We've been running full throttle in preparation for this new business, and many of our team members have logged thousands of miles and countless hours traveling to Japan for training on our new equipment. I am grateful for the efforts of the entire ADI team, and for the trust and confidence Chrysler has in Aisin."
Turpin added that the new project has provided opportunities to learn new processes, and has brought together a team of like-minded, multicultural people ready for the new challenge, and ready to exceed the customer's expectations.
With ADI's business expansion, Aisin operations in North America will grow to nearly 5,000 full time employees, with annual sales of $2 billion.
Founded in 1996, ADI is a global supplier of industrial transmissions for the forklift industry and steering columns for the automotive industry. ADI currently employs 220 team members with projected annual sales of over $75 million for 2012. ADI's parent company in Japan, Aisin Seiki Co. Ltd., is a global leader in the manufacture and supply of automotive components such as brakes, transmissions, drive train, chassis, body and information-related systems and components, and engine-related parts. Worldwide, Aisin has 165 consolidated companies and employs 78,000 people. In North and South America, the Aisin Group has 32 manufacturing plants, R & D and sales centers, and logistics operations, with approximately 8,000 employees.
SOURCE Aisin Drivetrain, Inc.