BorgWarner Supplies Advanced Wet Friction Plate Technology for ZF’s New 8- and 9-Speed Transmissions

BorgWarner’s Wet Friction Plates Reduce Drag, Enhance Shift Feel and Improve Fuel Economy

Auburn Hills, Michigan, July 16, 2015 – BorgWarner supplies its latest wet friction technology for ZF’s new 8- and 9-speed automatic transmissions. The 8-speed transmission features BorgWarner’s multi-segment friction plates with intricate groove designs, and the torque converter for the 9-speed transmission utilizes a piston plate with BorgWarner proprietary friction material. For several years, BorgWarner has manufactured friction plates in Heidelberg, Germany, supporting ZF’s production of 8-speed transmissions in Germany. Friction technologies for both transmissions are now also produced at BorgWarner’s plant in Bellwood, Illinois, locally supporting ZF’s manufacturing facilities in South Carolina and Mexico.

“With 60 years of experience in wet friction technology, BorgWarner continues to lead the market in creating sophisticated designs and leading-edge friction materials,” said Robin Kendrick, President and General Manager, BorgWarner Transmission Systems. “Our advanced processing capabilities allow unmatched design flexibility for outstanding performance while optimizing material utilization for lower cost. We are pleased to expand our long relationship with ZF with localized production in North America.” 

For ZF’s 8-speed transmission, BorgWarner’s multi-segment wet friction plate technology features full-depth grooves between segments of friction material to increase oil flow, improve cooling and prolong clutch life. Using advanced production techniques, grooves can be molded and/or cut into the friction material to disperse heat during engagement, reduce drag and improve shift feel. Fuel economy is also improved by reductions in spin loss. Unlike traditional manufacturing techniques that cut a full ring of friction material, BorgWarner’s multi-segment process uses smaller sections to significantly reduce material waste.

For the torque converter with ZF’s 9-speed transmission, BorgWarner’s industry leading friction material delivers increased power density and thermal capacity for superior launch control. The proprietary materials reduce drag and resist extreme heat to enhance shift feel with significantly less noise, vibration and harshness (NVH). For a complete list of specifications, visit

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