ZF, ZAPI Announce Electric Drives Cooperation

By Mike Osenga15 November 2017

ZF Friedrichshafen AG has agreed on a strategic cooperation with Italian electric motion control specialist ZAPI. The aim of the cooperation is to offer customers in commercial vehicle and industrial technology faster and more tailored complete electric or hybrid drive systems for trucks, buses, construction and agricultural machines, ships and special vehicles such as municipal vehicles.

The cooperation was announced at the Agritechnica trade fair in Hanover, Germany.

“In ZAPI we have a partner who has outstanding expertise in electric motors, inverters, controllers for electrified steering and related products for use in hybrid and purely electric vehicles,” said Wilhelm Rehm, ZF board member responsible for the Commercial Vehicle and Industrial Technology Division. “The company is a leader in motion control and a proven supplier to us.

“The combination of our product ranges creates a broader technological base, leads to complete systems for purely electric and autonomous driving and brings us closer to the long-term goal of zero emissions.”

In the technical alliance, ZF and ZAPI are contributing their specific expertise and accelerating the change to new drivetrain technologies. New business models for international markets are expected to emerge based on the established market position of both companies. ZF is contributing its expertise in system design and mechanical components such as transmissions, axles and steering systems.

The existing ZF product portfolio for electric drives in volume segments is supplemented by ZAPI with electric components such as electric motors, inverters, inverters for alternating current motors and dc voltage converters for applications in smaller quantities.

“In order for electrified driving to become more widespread in buses and trucks as well as in industrial vehicles, innovative approaches in industry as well as technology are needed,” said Giannino Zanichelli, founder and president of the ZAPI group. “The cooperation with ZF is therefore key for us to make electrified travel usable in a wide range of applications and to make technical solutions attractive for the commercial vehicle and industrial market. The close customer relationship and common vision of both companies enable us to offer a comprehensive technology portfolio.”

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