BRUSSELS -- German supplier ZF Friedrichshafen secured on Thursday unconditional U.S. and EU antitrust approval for its $7 billion bid for rival Wabco aimed at reinforcing its expertise in autonomous-driving technologies.
U.S. regulators, as a condition for approval, required the companies to sell Wabco's steering components business, R.H. Sheppard, because ZF and Wabco are the only North American suppliers of steering gears for large commercial vehicles. Wabco had acquired Sheppard in 2017.
The proposed merger, announced in March, is aimed at helping ZF bolster its expertise in autonomous-driving technologies.
ZF and Wabco already jointly develop a so-called Evasive Manoeuvre Assist system, which combines Wabco's braking, stability and vehicle dynamics control systems for trucks with ZF's active steering technology.
ZF ranks No. 5 on the Automotive News Europe list of the top 100 global suppliers with worldwide sales to automakers of $36.9 billion in 2018.