The ZF Group said it had received "several large-scale orders from North American vehicle manufacturers" for its eight-speed PowerLine automatic transmission, including "the largest individual commercial-vehicle-related order in company history".

Production will start in 2023 at Gray Court, South Carolina where ZF is expanding its transmission plant, spending EUR150m and creating 500 new jobs.

After winning "several major orders in the passenger car segment", ZF said it had approached new customers with a variant of the transmission for CVs.

"Thanks to PowerLine's versatile technology, we can now build on its success also in the commercial vehicle segment," said Wilhelm Rehm, of ZF's commercial vehicle technology unit.

"Following Europe and China, our commercial vehicle transmissions are now also present in the important North American market. Orders like this contribute to generating the revenue we need to invest in future-oriented technology and the transformation of our company."

In October 2020, global PowerLine production started in Friedrichshafen, Germany, where the transmission was developed.

Currently, ZF employs about 2,200 at the US plant which started operation in 2012.