Automotive supplier Eaton Corp. today disclosed more details about its previously announced $500 million contract with General Motors (GM). Eaton said it will provide GM with variable valve actuation technology and components for GM's new advanced powertrain technology, called “Displacement on Demand.”

The system, scheduled for use with GM's Generation IV V8 engine beginning in 2004, aims to improve fuel economy without sacrificing power and performance.

Eaton said GM’s Displacement on Demand provides a precise and instantaneous electronic matching of engine displacement to the performance level being demanded by the driver. Fuel consumption is therefore reduced in operating modes where high engine output is not required.

“One of the really unique features of this system is that it is completely transparent to the driver,” said Kynan Church of Eaton's automotive engine component operations. “We are pleased that GM can provide their customers with improved fuel economy while maintaining their V8 performance.”