The 1950s opened with the Jaguar XK120 sports car, one of the first post-war vehicles to feature drivetrain components made by GKN Transmissions Ltd. At the time one of the fastest production cars in the world, the reliability of the XK120 helped earn it victory at the Alpine Rally in two consecutive years.
The decade closed with the development of the Mini, featuring a constant velocity joint design by GKN Driveline that made transverse front wheel drive vehicle architectures possible for the first time. It revolutionised the auto industry and established GKN Driveline early on as the technology leader in advanced driveshaft systems.
Since then, generations of front-wheel drive cars have been built upon the Mini’s fundamental drivetrain concept. Around 80% of the world’s cars are front wheel drive with GKN Driveline’s global footprint supplying CV joints to the majority.
The fundamental importance of packaging, dynamics and efficiency mean that driveline advances remain a key enabling factor for the continuing evolution of powertrains and vehicle architectures.
Advances by GKN Driveline in CV joints and drive shaft systems that improve the performance and NVH have supported the introduction of automatic transmissions, more powerful compact cars and diesel engines.
The focus on driveline efficiency, the need to support higher installation angles for SUVs and the need to handle unprecedented levels of torque from eDrive systems all drive current developments at GKN Driveline.