TRW Continues Growth in Fuel Saving Electric Power Steering Technologies

Jun 24, 2010, 09:45 ET from TRW Automotive Holdings Corp.

LIVONIA, Mich., June 24 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- TRW Automotive Holdings Corp. (NYSE: TRW) today announced further growth for its Electrically Assisted Steering (EAS) systems that help save fuel and reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

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In particular, TRW is winning new business and seeing a high level of interest from global vehicle manufacturers for its Belt Drive (also known as Rack Drive) Electrically Powered Steering (EPS) system that brings the fuel efficiency and carbon dioxide reduction benefits of an electric system to larger vehicles with higher rack load steering system requirements reaching upwards to 15 kN in some applications.  

Peter Lake, executive vice president of sales and business development at TRW, said: "We're continuously improving and expanding the application of electrically powered steering – whether that's by making it more affordable for emerging markets with a lower cost Column Drive variant, or working on future generations of Belt Drive for larger vehicles that can include the Light Commercial Vehicles (LCVs) segment, drawing on experience gained over many years with electro-hydraulic solutions."  

In addition to significant North American launches over the past two years with Ford Motor Company, the system will launch in Europe for the first time with Ford this year and a second major global automotive manufacturer that will be fitting TRW's EPS Belt Drive systems to mid-size passenger cars beginning in 2012.  

As with all TRW electromechanical steering systems, the Belt Drive system only consumes noticeable power when steering assist is needed.  The energy consumption of an EPS system is typically less than seven percent of a conventional hydraulic rack and pinion power steering system. This equates to a fuel savings of 0.3 to 0.4 L/100km, with a corresponding reduction in carbon dioxide emissions of approximately 7-8g/km (up to 3.5 percent). The Belt Drive EPS system supports rack loads of up to 15 kN or higher depending on vehicle kinematics and dynamic requirements, while Column Drive systems are typically used on systems with output levels up to 85 Nm (some applications can take the output level to 100 Nm).

In addition to the fuel consumption and environmental benefits, electric steering is a technology enabler, and can be integrated with a variety of other electronically controlled systems to enhance safety and comfort.  Examples include integration with electronic stability control to help reduce stopping distances on slick surfaces and with Driver Assist Systems to offer features such as Lane Keeping Assist that actively help drivers stay in their intended lane.  Comfort functions such as semi automated parallel parking are also supported.

"TRW continues as a leader in the field of electric steering with more than 25 million units on world roadways," added Lake. "Electric steering systems eliminate the need for conventional mechanical and hydraulic components such as the steering pump, pulley, belt, reservoir and hydraulic lines and can be programmed with steering assist functions in line with vehicle manufacturer's requirements while offering the possibility to fine-tune the steering characteristics to the vehicle's target market."  

About TRW

With 2009 sales of $11.6 billion, TRW Automotive ranks among the world's leading automotive suppliers. Headquartered in Livonia, Michigan, USA, the Company, through its subsidiaries, operates in 26 countries and employs over 60,000 people worldwide.  TRW Automotive products include integrated vehicle control and driver assist systems, braking systems, steering systems, suspension systems, occupant safety systems (seat belts and airbags), electronics, engine components, fastening systems and aftermarket replacement parts and services.  All references to "TRW Automotive", "TRW" or the "Company" in this press release refer to TRW Automotive Holdings Corp. and its subsidiaries, unless otherwise indicated.  TRW Automotive news is available on the internet at www.trw.com.

Forward-Looking Statements

This release contains statements that are not statements of historical fact, but instead are forward-looking statements within the meaning of the U.S. Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995.  We caution readers not to place undue reliance on these statements, which speak only as of the date hereof.  All forward-looking statements are subject to numerous assumptions, risks and uncertainties which can cause our actual results to differ materially from those suggested by the forward-looking statements, including those set forth in our Report on Form 10-K for the fiscal year ended December 31, 2009 (our "Form 10-K") and our Form 10-Q for the quarter ended April 2, 2010, such as: the financial condition of our customers adversely affecting us or the viability of our supply base; disruptions in the financial markets adversely impacting the availability and cost of credit negatively affecting our business; any shortage of supplies adversely affecting us; any further material contraction in automotive sales and production adversely affecting our results, liquidity or the viability of our supply base; escalating pricing pressures from our customers; commodity inflationary pressures adversely affecting our profitability or supply base; our dependence on our largest customers; costs of product liability, warranty and recall claims and efforts by customers to adversely alter contract terms and conditions concerning warranty and recall participation; costs or liabilities relating to environmental, health and safety regulations; limitations on available cash and access to additional capital due to our substantial debt;  strengthening of the U.S. dollar and other foreign currency exchange rate fluctuations impacting our results; any increase in the expense of our pension and other postretirement benefits or the funding requirements of our pension plans; any impairment of a significant amount of our goodwill or other intangible assets; risks associated with non-U.S. operations, including foreign exchange risks and economic and political uncertainty in some regions; work stoppages or other labor issues at our facilities or at the facilities of our customers or suppliers; volatility in our annual effective tax rate resulting from a change in earnings mix or other factors; assertions by or against us relating to intellectual property rights; the possibility that our largest stockholder's interests will conflict with our or our other stockholders' interests; and other risks and uncertainties set forth in our Form 10-K and in our other filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. We do not undertake any obligation to release publicly any update or revision to any of the forward-looking statements.

SOURCE TRW Automotive Holdings Corp.



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