Current world-wide trends in powertrain development for passenger cars and light trucks indicate a diversification of engine operational principles and gear-box automation. Both for the functional and physical domain of the relevant controllers this may lead to a severely increased number of control unit variants. The paper proposes a torque information based controller communication to fight functional complexity. A physical integration of the local controller to the engine / gear-box resulting in mechatronic control modules further-on cuts the variants. These ideas have been set into mass-production already by integrated air/fuel systems (IAFS). For the transmission this same approach now has been realized in mass-production by the first mechatronic transmission module which integrates the electronics, valve-body and sensors of a new 5 speed transmission.