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January 22, 2014

BMW Tourer’s Gearshift Assistant

BMW is claiming a world first for the gearshift mechanism on its latest R1200 RT, the tourer version of its iconic boxer-engined motorcycle. Although it shares the same designation and overall layout as its highly respected predecessor, the new model incorporates numerous changes to the engine and powertrain, with the horizontally-opposed cylinders now water- as […]

November 14, 2013

Accord Hybrid: Motors Replace Entire Transmission

Many people are of the opinion that hybridization is making vehicles, especially their transmission and control systems, more and more complicated – often to the point where the engineering is hard to understand. While that might be true in certain instances, the new Honda Accord Hybrid proves that just the opposite can be the case, […]

October 10, 2013

Wet DCT Set to Displace Dry in Expanding Market

Automatic transmissions are beginning to overtake manuals due to the accelerating trend toward automation, says Mihir Kotecha, CEO of leading independent transmission manufacturer Getrag. “Manuals are now seen as niche products in mature markets such as Japan. Modern automatics, especially dual clutch transmissions, are good for comfort and good for cutting CO2.” Speaking at the […]

August 29, 2013

Bosch e-Clutch Allows Engine-off Coasting to Save Fuel

Presented in conjunction with a host of other driveline developments at a June media briefing in Germany, Bosch has been working on an electrically-operated clutch which will enable manual transmission cars to offer greater economy, ease of driving and refinement. The new eClutch system could enable manual vehicles to coast when the throttle is not […]

August 29, 2013

Downsized Transmission for New GM 3-Cylinder Turbo

General Motors’ overhaul of its small-displacement powertrain lineup for emissions-conscious markets is in full swing. At this autumn’s Frankfurt auto show, a brand-new 1.0 liter three-cylinder gasoline engine will complement the 1.6 liter turbo – itself a replacement for old 2-liter units – launched last year. Along with the total of three new engine families, […]

July 26, 2013

Daimler Confirms Nine-Speed Automatic as ZF Updates Rival 8-Speed

As it has been widely rumored in the auto industry for two years, Daimler has finally confirmed the existence of its new nine-speed planetary automatic for rear-drive cars, expected to be designated 9G-Tronic. Most commentators had expected the new transmission to make its official debut in the 2014 S-Class luxury sedan, revealed to the press […]

July 26, 2013

World’s First Nine-speed Automatic Transmission to Debut at [...]

Land Rover and Chrysler will be the first manufacturers to introduce the world’s first nine-speed automatic transmission in 2014 model year vehicles. Land Rover launches the new ZF 9HP transmission in the 2014 Range Rover Evoque later this year, while Chrysler will use it initially in the new Jeep Cherokee. As the lead partner for […]

June 20, 2013

BYD Shifts Up into the Big League

Chinese car producer BYD Auto, whose ambitious plans for mass-produced electric cars attracted interest from billionaire investor Warren Buffett in 2008, is beginning to broaden its focus to encompass larger and more prestigious cars, as well as those with conventional as opposed to hybrid or all-electric drivelines. The move follows disappointing figures for electric vehicle […]

May 15, 2013

Volkswagen Working on Ten-speed DCT

Volkswagen has gained unexpectedly wide coverage for comments by its CEO that the group was developing a dual clutch transmission with ten speeds. Speaking at the 2013 Vienna Motor Symposium, a long-established conference of automobile driveline engineers that takes place every April, Professor Martin Winterkorn linked the development of the new ten-speed DCT with that […]

May 15, 2013

Eco Standards Boost Prospects for DCT

Due to their efficiency and performance, dual clutch automatic transmissions (DCTs) will emerge as a key technology as global emissions standards tighten and customers begin to demand sporting response, as well as comfort and fuel economy. These are among the predictions of a strategic analysis of the global market for DCTs in passenger vehicles, carried […]

May 15, 2013

Ford, GM, Confirm Multispeed AT Collaboration

We reported in October last year that General Motors and Ford were planning to embark on another round of cooperation in the design and development of innovative automatic transmissions. Now, the two US giants have officially confirmed the existence of the program. “Ford Motor Co. and General Motors Co. have signed an agreement under which […]

April 17, 2013

Jatco’s New CVT Targets Medium and Large Cars

Jatco, the Nissan-controlled transmission manufacturer that is the world number one in the production of CVTs, forecasts global sales of front-wheel drive vehicles with automatic transmission will rise to 4.70 million by 2017; this compares to under 3.25 million in 2011. It is hardly surprising, then, that the Japanese supplier is bullish about the prospects […]

March 19, 2013

Hybrid Supercar Transmission Aims to Beat DCT

Almost all automakers, even those operating in the elite luxury and supercar segments, are now looking towards some form of partial electrification in order to reduce their corporate average CO2 emissions. The very latest top-drawer supercars revealed at the Geneva auto show in March bear this out: both Ferrari’s LaFerrari, with its 6.3 liter V12 […]

March 18, 2013

Ferrari: The Supercar That’s Also a Hybrid

It is not often that the automotive world is granted an insight into the engineering philosophy at legendary Italian supercar maker and Formula One protagonist Ferrari. Yet at a recent industry conference, Franco Cimatti, head of the vehicle concept and pre-development department at Ferrari GT – the company’s sports car group – revealed some details. […]

February 21, 2013

Honda Switches Strategy with New Three-Level Sport Hybrid Line-up

Honda launched the tiny Insight coupé as the world’s first commercially available hybrid in 1999. Now. the company has delivered a comprehensive update on its original neat and simple mild-hybrid Intelligent Motor Assist (IMA) technology, taking into account the major shift of the market towards more sophisticated full hybrid systems, larger batteries and stronger multiple […]

February 21, 2013

2014 Corvette to Feature Seven-Speed Manual Transmission Option

The much-anticipated 2014 Chevrolet Corvette, unveiled at the Detroit Auto Show on January 14th, features a host of driveline innovations including a new small-block V8 engine and, for the first time on a front-engined production car, the option of a seven-speed manual transmission. The new Corvette is the seventh generation of a model line that […]

February 21, 2013

New-Generation Golf DCT Pioneers Sailing

The new seventh-generation Volkswagen Golf has set the automotive world talking about flexible modular vehicle architectures and standardized interfaces between engines. Engine mounts, transmission housings and detailed changes to the control of its hardware have also allowed it to achieve greatly improved functionality from familiar combinations of components. A good example is what the company […]

January 9, 2013

Compact Mercedes Goes AWD with Innovative System

Ever since the launch of Mercedes-Benz’s new generation of compact B-Class and A-Class models in 2011, it has been known that all-wheel drive 4MATIC versions would later be added to the range. The addition of four-wheel drive would, in turn, permit the launch of much more powerful performance-oriented AMG versions, said Mercedes. This had been […]

January 9, 2013

Ford Fiesta to Use Dry DCT, while Focus Will Have Planetary Auto

Ford is set to announce automatic transmission choices for its innovative one-liter, three-cylinder Fox gasoline engine – and the surprise, according to inside information from leading transmission supplier Getrag, is that completely different transmission principles will be applied to the various models in the automaker’s European catalog. The Fiesta, for instance, will use a new-for-Europe […]

January 9, 2013

Porsche’s Low-CO2 Supercar is a Super-Intelligent Hybrid

Selected technical details of Porsche’s radical plug-in hybrid system for its 918 eco-supercar are now available. The mid-engined design was first shown at the 2010 Genevaauto show. In December 2012, Porsche engineers were on hand at the CTI Symposium on Advanced Transmissions in Berlin to explain more of the theory − and practice – behind […]

November 29, 2012

Continental’s Supercap Technology Brings Start-Stop to [...]

A new form of scalable stop-start power handling promises significant improvements in commercial vehicle and light truck energy efficiency, especially for vehicles engaged in delivery itineraries in urban areas with frequent drop-offs and where dense traffic imposes a lot of stop-start driving. Developed by Continental Automotive’s Powertrain division in Germany, Power Net Technology exploits the […]

November 29, 2012

New Transmissions help Mercedes Buses Achieve Euro VI Emissions

Euro VI emissions standards for buses and heavy trucks do not come fully into force until 2016 or beyond, but Mercedes-Benz has already revealed a new generation of bus chassis that anticipates the new standard. The two new chassis, the OC 500 LE for city buses and the OC 500 RF for touring coaches, are […]

November 2, 2012

Daimler Co-operation with Renault-Nissan Extends into [...]

Daimler and Renault-Nissan are extending their co-operation into the areas of fuel-efficient engines and automatic transmissions. The two groups’ CEOs, Dieter Zetsche and Carlos Ghosn (pictured) confirmed the new accord at the Paris auto show last month during an annual media update on the partnership between the German and the Franco-Japanese organizations. The new engine […]

November 1, 2012

Sporty Clio will Popularize Dual Clutch Transmissions among the [...]

The Clio Renaultsport in its various guises over the years has always been a popular compact hot-hatch icon, its combination of vivid performance, sharp handling and accessible pricing regularly placing the model top in magazine comparison tests and all-time favorites rankings. Now, however, with the switch to the fourth-generation Clio comes an important change of […]

November 1, 2012

Classic Rally Car is Test Bed for Latest Hybrid Drive Module

Italy-based transmissions supplier Oerlikon Graziano has found a novel way of field testing a new and future-oriented engineering development – by running it in a legendary purpose-built classic rally car, the Lancia 037, and taking part in the Rally Legend event in the republic of San Marino in October. The original Lancia 037, a successor […]

October 31, 2012

New Eight-Speed Automatic Improves Ram’s Fuel Efficiency

Demonstrating just how effective a more modern transmission can be at boosting the fuel efficiency of an existing vehicle, the 2013 Chrysler-Group Ram 1500 pickup boasts an improvement of at least 20 percent in fuel economy thanks largely to the fitting of an eight-speed automatic gearbox and a stop-start system. The 3.6 liter Pentastar-engined 1500 […]

October 29, 2012

Getrag Announces New Dual Clutch Generation

With its second generation dry-clutch 6DCT250 becoming its first ever DCT to sell more than a million units, dual clutch specialist Getrag has announced a fresh line-up of third-generation DCTs aiming to take the fight to the new wave of nine- and ten-speed planetary automatics under development by suppliers and major automakers groups. Dual clutch […]

October 12, 2012

GM and Ford to Co-operate on New-Generation Multi-speed

The two largest North American automakers are joining forces to develop a new generation of fuel-efficient multi-speed automatic transmissions to help bring down their future corporate average fuel economy to the much lower levels laid down in president Obama’s new vehicle emissions standards for the period up to 2025. Ford and GM have already co-operated […]

October 1, 2012

ZF’s Modular TraXon Set to Expand Transmission Thinking

An innovative suite of modular transmission components from ZF promises to revolutionize the way commercial vehicle engineers configure heavy truck drivelines and has the potential to deliver substantial reductions in fuel consumption and noise emissions, as well as reducing the driver’s workload.The new TraXon system consists of a central gearbox unit, of either 12 or […]

September 30, 2012

Hybrid Power Offers Numerous Benefits in Heavy Commercial [...]

The application of hybrid power in the heavy truck sector could provide an even wider range of benefits than those that consumers are already familiar with from hybrid passenger cars such as the Toyota Prius. Launching the Hybrid module for its innovative TraXon modular transmission system, ZF says that hybridization does much more than simply […]

September 29, 2012

New Volvo FH Series Raises the Bar in Truck Engineering

Launching the new FH series at September’s IAA international Motor Show in Hannover, Germany, Volvo Trucks President Claes Nilsson (pictured) hailed the new design as “an outstanding long-haul truck, with technology way ahead of its competitors.” Supporting Nilsson’s claim is a formidable list of innovations that do indeed set the FH apart from traditional designs. […]

September 26, 2012

Dana, Allison and Fallbrook to Form Strategic Alliance

Dana Holding Corporation announced at the 2012 IAA commercial vehicles show in Germany that it is discussing the formation of a strategic alliance with transmission manufacturer Allison and Fallbrook Technologies Inc, best known for its continuously variable transmission technology. The intention, says a statement on the Dana website, is to “develop, manufacture and commercialize high-efficiency […]

September 25, 2012

CVT Share Set to Rise, Say North American Industry Leaders

CVT transmissions are set to more than double their share of the North American market, according to a front-page report headlined “Shifting into No-Gear” in Automotive News. Prompted by the announcement that the 2013 Honda Accord would employ a CVT automatic rather than the traditional geared transmission, the trade journal quotes forecasts by IHS Automotive […]

September 23, 2012

Audi R8 Supercar Makes the Switch from AMT to Dual Clutch

Sports enthusiasts have always had high regard for the mid-engined Audi R8 supercar, launched in 2006. Since that date the R8 has expanded from a single model to four, with a choice of V8 or V10 engines and coupé or open-topped Spyder body styles. And in that intervening period Volkswagen has taken control of Porsche, […]

September 20, 2012

Automated Manuals Gaining Share in US

Class 8 heavy trucks in North America are turning towards automated manual transmissions as a more economical alternative to a full automatic that does not demand the high driving skills required by standard manual models. Though 80 percent of truck buyers still opt for full manuals, the proportion preferring AMT is rising by 2 to […]

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