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Dana Advances Development Of VariGlide™ Continuously Variable Planetary Technology

HANOVER, Germany, May 19, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Dana Holding Corporation (NYSE: DAN) today announced new milestones in the development of VariGlideā„¢ technology, a revolutionary new transmission design that incorporates continuously variable planetary (CVP) technology.  This patented, planetary traction drive will be integrated into a variety of power paths to optimize the transmission assembly, significantly reducing fuel consumption and maximizing performance.

Developed through a strategic licensing relationship with Fallbrook Technologies Inc., this product can replace the torque converter in some transmission configurations to decouple engine speed from the vehicle's travel or working speed.  Ideal for the rapid acceleration, deceleration, and precise positioning required by material-handling applications, it also eliminates the need for forward and reverse clutches while reducing overall engine speeds, allowing the engine to operate at its optimum efficiency level and reduce noise levels.

Numerous powersplit power path concepts for forklift truck applications have been analyzed, and initial simulations show projected fuel savings of up to 20 percent for a standard-sized forklift truck operating in a typical pick-and-place duty cycle.  Dana is currently upfitting a 2.2-tonne forklift truck with VariGlide technology for functional evaluation. 

VariGlide technology will be offered as a pre-assembled module providing a standard powersplit configuration for forklift truck transmissions produced by original-equipment manufacturers.  Dana will also implement VariGlide technology in a premium configuration optimized to supply further fuel efficiency and productivity gains in select Spicer ® powershift transmissions. 

"Dana devotes considerable resources to advanced engineering to produce breakthroughs in fuel efficiency and productivity," said Aziz Aghili, president of Dana Off-Highway Driveline Technologies.  "The momentum behind our VariGlide technology program shows how Dana is accelerating the development of innovations that can offer substantial gains with minimal changes to existing equipment designs."

"We are delighted to be working with Dana toward successfully commercializing the Fallbrook technology licensed in the VariGlide CVP for the material-handling market," said William G. Klehm III, chairman and CEO of Fallbrook. "The product has significant advantages that we believe will assist users in meeting future operating cost, vehicle performance, and legislative goals."

VariGlide technology is ideally suited to optimize the productivity of 1.5- to 3-tonne forklift trucks, which account for about 80 percent of the global material-handling equipment market today.

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