Aramco and HORSE, from crude to internal combustion engine is a short step. Aramco has purchased 10 percent equity interest in HORSE Powertrain Limited. Why the oil state company of Saudi Arabia invest in technology that so many see as obsolete, some even point to as public enemy No. 1?

Why did the paths of Aramco and HORSE Powertrain cross?

Ahmad O. Al Khowaiter, Aramco Executive Vice President of Technology & Innovation, explains: “Aramco’s investment is expected to directly contribute to the development and deployment of affordable, efficient, and lower-carbon emission internal combustion engines globally. With Geely and Renault, we plan to leverage our collective expertise and resources to support ground-breaking advances in both engine and fuel technologies. With a strong emphasis on innovation, our goal is to provide solutions that can help reduce transport greenhouse gas emissions while meeting the needs of both vehicle manufacturers and motorists. In securing long-term partnership between Valvoline Global and HORSE Powertrain Limited, Renault Group, and Geely in connection with this investment, we are also demonstrating Aramco’s ability to both create and capture value at the global level.” ‘Creating value’, words that gain specific weight when referring to the world’s largest oil company, with $500bn in revenues in 2023.

Who’s who?

HORSE Powertrain, what are we talking about? First and foremost, automotive, which is surprising in itself, given that cars are candidates as vanguards of electrification, at least in Europe. The joint venture was created by Geely and Renault and it’s focused on engines and transmissions. The €7.4bn, 19,000-employee company, which has 17 factories worldwide, is capable of building 3.2 milion units a year and aims a 5 milion units target.

Luca de Meo, Renault Group CEO, said: “Mitigating carbon in the automotive industry won’t be a solo play. It requires the best players to join forces to open new paths and come up with innovative solutions. That is what’s happening today as we welcome Aramco as a strategic partner in HORSE Powertrain Limited. A dream team is born to reinvent the future of ICE and hybrid technologies.” 

Daniel Li, Geely Holding CEO, said: “Mitigating greenhouse gas emissions will require global synergies, multi-faceted technological solutions, and the sharing of expertise. With Aramco’s support and expertise in fuel technologies, HORSE Powertrain Limited further cements its role as a leader in pioneering low-carbon and carbon-free fuel technology solutions such as methanol and hydrogen.”

Matias Giannini, HORSE Powertrain Limited CEO, said: “I am delighted that Aramco has joined HORSE Powertrain Limited. Their expertise in fuels and hydrogen makes them a great partner for us to deliver cutting-edge, lower-emission powertrain solutions, driving our industry’s carbon mitigation efforts forward. Together, we will set new benchmarks for innovation in the automotive sector.


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