Here ya go..
God Bless Google...From Roch Democrat & Chronicle..
"(August 1, 2003) — The flashy new Chevrolet SSR will likely turn a lot of heads once it hits the roads — and a part designed by workers in Chili will help drivers keep the car on the road.
The growing popularity of Zexel Torsen Inc.’s Torsen differential and other products attracted the attention of Toyoda Machine Works Ltd. The Japanese maker of four-wheel-drive systems agreed to buy Zexel on Thursday for more than $100 million.
The Torsen differential helps prevent cars from slipping off the road. The traction control system transfers power to the wheels that need it most.
The part is already in 38 vehicle models, including Hummers, Audis and Fords. Toyota Motor Corp. has mentioned the part in ads for its 4Runner SUV.
“ That one application with Toyota about doubled our business,” said O.P. Gupta, Zexel’s vice president of North American operations.
Toyoda said it sees Zexel’s revenues growing from $91 million to more than $165 million in the near future.
The SSR is not the largest contract for Zexel Torsen in terms of volume, but the company is hoping the SSR will further increase Zexel’s American market share, Gupta said.
“ This is a highly visible vehicle in the U.S. market,’’ he said. “ It’s a great opportunity for us.”
The merger with Toyoda will only create more opportunities, Gupta said. “ We’ll be able to supply customer needs across all platforms,” he said.
The SSR continues the retro-chic trend started by vehicles such as the Chrysler PT Cruiser. Part old-time pickup truck, part convertible, part roadster; the SSR is already winning accolades, and demand for it is high.
“ It’s bragging rights,” said Ted Robertson, who served as chief engineer for Chevy on the SSR. “ They’ll have a leg up on every one else because they’ve been involved from the beginning.”
Zexel Torsen began as a division of Gleason Corp. It later became a joint venture with Japanese Zexel Corp. and was sold to Robert Bosch GmBH in 1994.
Zexel Torsen employs about 200 people worldwide, including the eight people in Chili who do the company’s design work. The local plant will remain open after the merger.
Robertson, who first used the Torsen when he designed the Chevy Camaro and Pontiac Firebird, said the company’s responsiveness impressed him. In 1994, Robertson met Gupta, who asked for his opinion of the Torsen. Robertson told him it was too big, too heavy and too expensive.
Six months later, Robertson got an unsolicited call from Gupta, asking for a chance to show off the redesigned product.
“ It really blew me away that they went away and on their own took up the challenge,” Robertson said