Clearly, there’s much at GKN (and other Tier 1s like it) to engage the talented engineering student and graduate undecided between it or a career with a car manufacturer. That he was never proposed as a spokesperson for GKN Driveline gives Jackman-Day’s glowing tribute even greater credibility: “GKN is a great place to develop as an engineer because of the variety of opportunities it offers. AWD development projects such as the Twinster system have been incredibly rewarding and allowed me to apply my passion for high- performance cars to pioneering driveline technologies.”
As he hoofs the E-Pace across the ice, I don’t doubt him.
GKN DRIVELINE IN NUMBERS:
£4.2bn - Value of sales in 2016 (up from £3.5bn in 2015)
26,500 - Number of people GKN employs
49 - Number of manufacturing sites around the world
90% - Share of the world’s vehicle manufacturers GKN works with
50% - Share of the world’s vehicles that feature its products
50km - Pure electric range of GKN’s eAxle
THE ALL TWINSTER HYBRID SYSTEM:
The focus of GKN Driveline’s Wintertest programme was its new All Twinster Hybrid System, fitted to a Mercedes-AMG GLA 45, christened GTD18.
Replacing the standard car’s mechanical all-wheel-drive system with a mechanical twin-clutch Twinster at the front and a two- speed, electric eTwinsterX eAxle at the rear, incorporating a GKN electric motor and inverter and a high- performance battery, gives the plug- in hybrid demonstrator independent torque vectoring of all four wheels, as well as zero-emissions capability. Having two automatic gears allows it to get off the line quickly and cruise comfortably at higher speeds.
There wasn’t much high-speed cruising to be had on the ice at Arjeplog. Instead, setting the car up in an oversteer attitude and steering it on the throttle was the order of the day. Having control of all four wheels means the GTD18 is even more agile and secure than the already impressive Jaguar E-Pace demo.
Its relevance on the damp streets of Britain? Imagine you haven’t seen the truck bearing down on you as you leave a T-junction. Step on the gas and the system sends all the torque to the outside wheels, enabling you to turn safely without spinning out.