Press Releases

Tenneco Automotive Innovation Wins Automotive News PACE Award

April 12, 2005

Kinetic Reverse Function Stabilizer (RFS) called a model of innovation. Two other Tenneco technologies receive honorable mentions.

LAKE FOREST, ILLINOIS, APRIL 12, 2005 - Tenneco Automotive (NYSE: TEN) announced today that it received an Automotive News PACE Award for its Kinetic RFS technology, a suspension system innovation designed to eliminate the engineering compromises encountered when correcting both vertical articulation and roll on a vehicle. The award was presented at the annual Automotive News PACE Awards ceremony on Monday, April 11, 2005, at the Max M. Fisher Music Center in Detroit, Mich.

"It is truly an honor to receive this award for our Kinetic RFS system, an elegantly simple technology that delivers improved traction, braking and roll resistance via a passive, reactive technology that is less complex and costly than fully-active systems," said Mark P. Frissora, Tenneco Automotive chairman and CEO. "This recognition is testament to our commitment to advanced technology and dedication to growing our global businesses by developing innovative solutions for our worldwide customers."

According to the judges' citation, the Kinetic RFS technology "is the kind of breathtakingly simple solution that makes it a model of innovation..." The citation continued, saying, "this suspension innovation insight means greater and softer suspension travel, plus stiffer anti-roll, and paradoxically, both better handling and compliance both on-road and off-road. Head toss and fatigue are greatly reduced in both situations."

Kinetic RFS is a unique approach to vehicle dynamics, which allows significant enhancement to vehicle handling while improving ride comfort and off-road capability. The passive system places a hydraulic cylinder at the vehicle's front and rear stabilizer bars, replacing one of the links to the suspension. The cylinders are then interconnected in such a way that they resist motion if both bars attempt to twist in the same direction, but do not resist motion in opposite directions. When the stabilizer bars move in the same direction, the RFS system cylinders do not move, thus resisting body roll. In articulation events, however, the RFS system cylinders will move, preventing the stabilizers from resisting suspension motion.

The first commercial application of Tenneco's Kinetic RFS was as an option on the 2004 Lexus GX 470. In addition to being a factory option again on this year's model, the Kinetic RFS comes standard on the 2005 Lexus GX 470 sport package.

Tenneco also announced that two other entries received honorable mentions:

  • The Combined Muffler Heat Exchanger, which runs engine coolant through a conduit in the muffler canister body where it is warmed by exhaust gas, resulting in the ability to provide amplified cabin heat within two minutes of engine start.
  • The Semi-Active Muffler (SAM) technology, developed in Europe. The SAM technology provides a cost effective means of satisfying the need to provide acoustic silencing at low engine speeds while minimizing back pressure at high engine RPMs.

The prestigious PACE award, short for Premier Automotive suppliers' Contribution to Excellence, premiered 11 years ago to honor innovation in products and processes by suppliers. Automotive News, Capgemini and the Transportation Research Center, Inc. present the award, with additional support from the City of Sunderland and the Original Equipment Suppliers Association.

About Tenneco Automotive
Tenneco Automotive is a $4.2 billion manufacturing company with headquarters in Lake Forest, Illinois and approximately 18,400 employees worldwide. Tenneco Automotive is one of the world's largest designers, manufacturers and marketers of emission control and ride control products and systems for the automotive original equipment market and the aftermarket. Tenneco Automotive markets its products principally under the Monroe®, Walker®, Gillet® and Clevite® Elastomer brand names. Among its products are Sensa-Trac® and Monroe Reflex® shocks and struts, Rancho® shock absorbers, Walker® Quiet-Flow® mufflers, Dynomax® performance exhaust products, and Clevite® Elastomer noise, vibration and harshness control components.

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