General Motors and Suzuki Motor Corp. have reached an agreement that will allow Suzuki to produce variants of the new GM-designed global V6 engine for use in future Suzuki cars and trucks.

The two companies announced the agreement following a meeting of GM chairman and CEO Rick Wagoner and Suzuki chairman and CEO Osamu Suzuki. Financial terms of the agreement were not disclosed.

As part of the agreement, Suzuki will build both 3.2-litre and 3.6-liter engine variants at its Sagara engine plant in Shizuoka, Japan. Suzuki engineers will tailor the engines to meet the packaging requirements and brand characteristics of their own vehicles. Production is scheduled to begin in 2006.

“The automotive industry is experiencing severe competition around the world,” Suzuki said. “By partnering together to produce this new engine, we’re able to capitalise on the synergies and savings of our relationship with GM.”

The GM-Suzuki’s partnership began in 1981, and has resulted in several global agreements in product development, manufacturing and distribution.

The new global V6 engine features all-aluminium construction, 60-degree, dual overhead cam and four-valves-per-cylinder design. With variants ranging from 2.8-litre to 3.6-litre, the new engines incorporate the latest technology, including continuously variable valve timing.

GM introduced the global V6 engine in its US 2004 model year vehicles and builds the engine line at its St. Catharines, Canada, and Holden Port Melbourne, Australia, engine plants.

Suzuki imports and distributes all Chevrolet vehicles in Japan, except the Corvette, and sells them through its Arena dealer network alongside the Suzuki-built Cruze.