Emilio Maldonado - Punch Powertrain
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Working on the cutting edge of automotive technology

Punch Powertrain is a Belgian automotive company that produces Continuously Variable Transmissions (CVT’s) and fuel efficient powertrains. The company faces a period of explosive growth as the technology is very popular in Asia.

Systems Engineer Emilio Maldonado (29) from Mexico works for the company’s R&D department in the Dutch city of Eindhoven in the Brainport region. There he works on improving the technology, which he absolutely enjoys: ‘at Punch we work on the cutting edge of technology and that is extremely exciting.’

In Europe CVT’s that are used in automatic cars are not that popular but the Asian market is huge. Automatic cars are very popular in densely populated areas and the technology is crucial in achieving environmental goals. Punch Powertrain -former producer of the Variomatic CVT used in car brand DAF- works on further developing and refining the technology.

“I am very passionate about technology and about green technology in specific. At Punch Powertrain we are developing sustainable transmissions. We are working on powertrain solutions for hybrids and fully electric cars. With our SRM (Switched Reluctance Machine) motor we are trying to make an electric motor more sustainable by removing the need to use scarce resources that are obtained with methods that damage the environment.”

Excited about contributing to the future

“A very exciting future awaits us and I want to be part of that and contribute to it. That is why I came to the Netherlands. In Mexico I would be missing out on this. I would not be able to work on breakthrough technologies. Knowing that the technology we are developing at Punch Powertrain is going to bridge a gap to what is needed in the future is very exciting.”

Fascinated by the automotive field

The role I fulfil requires a multidisciplinary technical background. I obtained my B.Sc. in Electrical and Mechanical Engineering in Mexico and after that I started working for a huge company there as an application engineer. During an internship at Porsche in Germany, however, I realised how much I was fascinated by the automotive sector. I decided to apply for a scholarship to get admitted to Eindhoven University of Technology and I succeeded. So in 2011 I started an M.Sc. in Automotive Technology.

Returned to Europe because of multi-cultural and multi-disciplinary environment

“After I had finished my masters I started working for Prodrive Technologies in Eindhoven with my main project being in Mexico, where they had started an office, but eventually it had to close and I moved to VUHL, a Mexican automotive company. There I missed the multi-disciplinary and multicultural environment that I found in the Netherlands and I decided to return to Eindhoven.”

“Finding a house in Eindhoven was quite a challenge but finding a job was not that hard. I found Punch Powertrain through MCA, an automotive consultancy company. The company is really R&D oriented, it is growing really fast and there is a lot of talent here. It is a vibrant place to work at and we are working on cutting-edge technology which is really exciting.”

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