By on June 17, 2016

Tremec transmission

A major automotive supplier plans to build a production facility in the Detroit area and make it the base for its U.S. operations.

Tremec Corp., best known for its high-performance transmissions, plans to invest $54 million in a multi-purpose facility in Wixom, Michigan, according to Crain’s Detroit Business. Besides production of transmissions and powertrain components, the facility will host Tremec’s sales and technical operations, and serve as its American headquarters.

Yesterday, the Mexico-based company landed a $731,500 performance-based grant from an arm of the Michigan Economic Development Corporation. It expects to create 133 jobs in Wixom, which offered the company a reduction in property taxes to seal the deal.

According to Crain’s, Michigan offered Tremec the grant after it learned the supplier was eyeing a site in Indiana, closer to vehicle assembly plants in the South and Midwest.

Tremec set up shop in Michigan in 1975, and currently has a small number of employees manning a technical and sales office in Plymouth Township. Products manufactured in the future Wixon plant will serve the automotive and heavy equipment sectors.

Michigan recently lured British performance parts supplier Cosworth to the area with a $2.1 million loan, while supplier Flex-N-Gate landed a $3.5 million loan to build a plant in one of Detroit’s most impoverished neighborhoods.

[Image: RVAE34/Flickr]

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14 Comments on “Michigan Lures Tremec Transmission Plant, HQ to the Detroit Area...”

  • avatar

    Happy to see more (at least in baby steps) production coming to America.

  • avatar

    T’would be nice if Tremec could undercut Getrag and go back to being the sole supplier for MT transmissions on the Mustang.

    • 0 avatar

      raph, I logged in to say something to this effect.

      My 2012 Mustang has the Getrag 6 speed. When I first bought the car it had an annoying vibration when decelerating from 22-2000 RPM’s. Since installing a hurst (iirc) short shifter, however, it has gone away. I love the way it shifts now.

      My wife’s 2012 6 speed Camaro has a Tremec unit and we haven’t had any issues with it whatsoever. Its shifts are more consistent than the Mustang’s, with the same exact feel every time. The only thing I don’t like about the tranny itself is how springy it is going into and coming out of gear.

  • avatar

    That darned Governor Snyder. He is going to ruin all of Jennifer Granholm’s hard work.

  • avatar

    Southeast Michigan is the center of the global automotive industry, and likely will always be so.

    Tremec is based in Mexico. Brembo is based in Italy. Toyota is based in Japan. Tata is based in India. They all have facilities in Michigan. Toyota spent over a billion dollars building their North American R&D center in Ann Arbor. Hyundai/Kia didn’t spend as much but they have a significant R&D facility outside of Ypsilanti.

    Tesla doesn’t want people to know about it, but they still have dozens of engineers in the Detroit area (plus, where do you think they hired their talent? You think Elon Musk knows anything about building cars or a car company?).

    One advantage the U.S. has over China is that we allow 100% foreign direct investment. If a Chinese company wants to set up shop in the U.S., they can. If a foreign company wants to set up shop in China, they need a local partner. I think that long term that hurts local industry by protecting it from competition. It also discourages investment.

    • 0 avatar
      Big Al from Oz

      I do believe the auto industry is dispersed throughout the world.

      There are many headquarters or global centres.

      I’d say VAG is in Germany, Toyota is in Japan, Hyundai/Kia is in Korea, etc. These are all very large manufacturers that take on the US giants. Even Toyota is a giant bigger than GM, Ford and FCA as is VAG.

      Also, the auto manufacturers who are in Detroit don’t just produce motor vehicles. They have their fingers in defence, aerospace, even communications, satellites, etc.

      This doesn’t include the work being done around the globe by EU an Asian companies.

      Design and engineering centres also are dispersed globally.

      Just because someone sets up shop in Detroit does validate it’s significance to a degree, but don’t overstate the significance of setting up shop vs centres of control.

      As the auto industry continues to rationalise and set up centres of production, the same is occurring with design and engineer.

      The only real centres that are US come from the Big 3. You will of course have others who set up shop, just like the Big 3 have their finger in the pie around the globe.

      Detroit is a large and important centre of the auto industry, but what percentage of control does Detroit have? 25%, 30%, etc. We just don’t know.

  • avatar

    Mexico should build a wall to keep its companies from moving all their jobs to cheap US locations. And make the US pay for it.

  • avatar

    The good thing about USA is that only interests of large shareholders, CEOs and may be higher management matter and employees can go and f-k themselves or vote for Trump which is another version of the same. I am not sure that Mexico is any better though, most likely worse if half of population wants to move to US of all the places.

    • 0 avatar

      That trend is slowing or perhaps reversing as businesses grow in Mexico ( not just manufacturing but agriculture to cite one example ). LIke the country being over run by rapists and murderers extreme numbers of Mexicans relocating is largely a myth perpetrated by a poorly coiffed orangutan whipping up its base.

      Just as well, illegsl and legal migrant workers are treated like crap in the US and in some cases practically reduced to chattel.

  • avatar
    White Shadow

    But…wait….nobody is buying manual transmissions anymore, right? Does Tremec make anything other than manual gearboxes? Because when I hear Tremec, the only thing that comes to mind is Mustang manual transmissions. FWIW, I’m a big fan of Tremec transmissions in general because they take far more abuse than the old Borg Warner boxes in my old Mustangs.

  • avatar
    Ron B.

    Interesting to note that Michigan is at least trying hard to bring company operations to the area,unlike the entire country of Australia where successive governments and the green movement believe that we do not need industry and the nation will be better off being a mass importer.

    • 0 avatar
      Big Al from Oz

      Ron B.
      I like your little rib.

      The reality is the only part of the Australia motor vehicle industry that has been dismantled/relocated is the assembly side.

      Australia has retained vehicle design and development. No more tax dollars are being wasted doing something we are not competitive at. This is what is important.

      Just having tax dollars and restrictions/regulations/tariffs/taxes, etc to protect an industry tells me the consumers and tax payer is not getting value for their investment/purchase.

      So far it seems that the loss of the auto industry has done no harm to the country.

      It’s a pity no more V8 Fords and GMHs will be made, but why would you build something at a loss? Do you manage yourself in such a fashion?

  • avatar

    It’s not the Aussie government; it’s big business. The population of Oz is only 23m or so compared to 520m in North America; (54m in Great Lakes Region alone) It is not cost effective to have separate plants there. Australia is a lovely country with great people, I hope they keep it that way.

    • 0 avatar
      Big Al from Oz

      You are quite correct in your assumption. The subsidisation of the motor vehicle industry in Australia was costing the taxpayers over $2 000 per vehicle made. In 2013 the US was forking out an average of $3 000 per US made vehicle. This to me is not logical.

      It’s not our population that has made us uncompetitive, especially in this day and age with fantastic global logistics.

      The outcome has actually been favourable for us, the high paying, high skilled jobs are retained and the lower paying production work has been dissolved.

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