In 2007 our founding directors formed the company with the intention of building a community of exceptional engineers to inspire and challenge the rapidly evolving transmissions industry. In the last 10 years the business has gone from strength to strength, with our UK technical centre now home to a team of over 80, and a growing team in the USA.
Hover or click on a member of our management team to find out more.
Mark Findlay, Managing Director
Mark holds a long track record of success in the transmission industry from both a technical and commercial background. With a wealth of technical experience generated over a huge variety of transmission projects in both consultancies and OEMs, rarely matched in the field of automotive transmissions. His continued exposure to the commercial aspects of the transmission industry has given him an unrivalled insight into its challenges and opportunities.
David Kelly, Director
David is a simulation specialist with extensive experience create cutting-edge techniques in optimisation and simulation. His skills were developed in the design of automotive transmissions and also encompass the simulation of engine and vehicle systems. David helps Drive System Design to provide robust optimisation of any aspect of the design features, or functional characteristics, of a modern transmission. In his role as Director David is responsible for DSD’s future technology direction and research co-ordination.
John Morton, Engineering Director
John's design skills were honed in the design of transmissions for off-highway, mainstream automotive and motorsport vehicles: the latter contributing to three championship winning car designs. A hunger for innovation and technology, and a genuine passion for teamwork, was born during his time in motorsport. In his role as Engineering Director John brings responsive and highly focused processes to the engineering teams, promoting imaginative and efficient engineering solutions.
Alex Tylee-Birdsall, Technical Director
As an acknowledged expert in transmission design analysis Alex has helped Drive System Design to build unrivalled design toolsets. His project management skills allow the company to be exceptionally customer focused and respond quickly to customer needs. Alex is widely recognised as having exceptional technical expertise in the design and analysis of geared transmission systems across all industries. In his role as Director Alex is responsible for critical business operations.
Lee Sykes, Commercial Director
After graduating from the University of Manchester with a degree in Aeronautical Engineering, Lee’s initial career covered vehicle and powertrain system CAE and CFD at a UK vehicle manufacturer. Over the last 20+ years, Lee has held senior technical and commercial leadership roles in global consulting engineering businesses, focusing on transmission, driveline and powertrain system integration. During this time, Lee has overseen production engineering programmes including BMW Mini powertrain, a Chinese 8AT and Electric Drive Unit, and the Bugatti Veyron DCT. Lee’s international outlook came to the fore in a successful stint as President of a Shanghai-based operation. Having joined Drive System Design as Commercial Director in February 2018, Lee is applying his customer-focused approach to help grow and diversify the business, whilst ‘rolling up his sleeves’ to support the DSD engineering teams in major programmes delivery.
Gerald Andrews, Chairman
Gerald’s career has spanned all aspects of engineering from product development to manufacturing and niche product supply. He has built and led high performing teams responsible for transmissions and drivelines in iconic vehicles such as the Bugatti Veyron, Ford GT and the all-conquering Audi Race 8.On the commercial side he has successfully grown businesses under private and listed company ownership. In addition Gerald served as an executive on the board of Ricardo plc. Gerald joined Drive System Design as Chairman in September 2017.
Jon Brentnall, President, North America
Jon has worked in the field of transmission engineering for over 17 years, stemming from a Masters Degree specialising in gear design. As Chief Engineer at an international consultancy, he led programs covering transmissions, e-drive transaxles and rear-axles, power-split electrical hybrid transmissions, CVT (wind-turbine) transmissions and dynamic modelling of shift systems. Jon was also a lead engineer working for DaimlerChrysler in its hybrid joint venture with GM and BMW. He has supported several programs with patented inventions and is actively growing DSD’s capabilities in transmission development for automotive, commercial truck and aerospace programs in North America.
Tony Walsh, Vice President, North America
Tony’s experience in transmissions engineering dates back over 30 years, having started his career as an apprentice before going on to complete his Engineering degree. Since then Tony has held a number of senior roles, most recently as Commercial Director and Lecturer before becoming Vice President of DSD Inc. Tony’s portfolio of projects include the engineering of a 750kW Wind Turbine gearbox, and the management of the engineering, from specification through to volume production, of a 2 speed active transfer case.
Matt Hole, Head of Design Engineering
Leading the design and analytical team within DSD, Matt is responsible for the technical output of DSD's design team and setting future research targets and goals. Owing to an early career in aerospace and motorsport design, Matt is particularly interested in the use of composites in transmission applications and exploring innovative ways of using software to reduce development times of transmission systems.
Simon Shepherd, Head of Electrified Powertrain
Simon holds over 14 years’ experience in vehicle powertrain systems on projects ranging from a production super car transmission to a flywheel energy recovery system for a city bus. In his role as Head of Electrified Powertrain he now focuses on leading system development activities in hybrid and electric vehicle powertrain projects.
Pedro Zabala, Head of Control Systems
Pedro began his career studying at the Universidad del País Vasco (University of the Basque Country) where he gained his knowledge in industrial engineering, aeronautics and control systems. He subsequently joined Cranfield University to gain his MSc in Automotive Product Engineering which he completed in 2005 before taking his first role as a Transmissions and Driveline Systems Engineer.Pedro is responsible for DSD's Control Systems team, leading engineering programs and providing technical expertise in the areas of control system development and dynamic simulation.
Rob Oliver, Chief Engineer, Test & Development
Rob’s development engineering skills were built over 15 years leading driveline and complete vehicle development programmes at an off-highway OEM. In previous board-level roles, Rob gained an in-depth knowledge of traction drives and was involved in the grant of eleven patents related to the architecture, materials and control of traction drive transmissions. He brings considerable experience of the development of off-highway vehicles and transmission sub-systems to DSD where he is focused on ensuring the company's test and development capabilities achieve world-class standards.