U.S. government is getting more and more strict on vehicle fuel
economy and it expects the major automakers to new regulations across
their entire vehicle range. As fuel economy standards become more
strict, the automakers are looking to new technologies to help
improve fuel efficiency without sacrificing the performance that
drivers expect from their machines.Ford has already announced
that one of the ways that it will seek to improve fuel economy is by
moving to six-speed transmission across its entire fleet in the
coming years. A perfect example of how Ford is using a six-speed
automatic transmission to improve fuel economy is the 2011
Ford Mustang. Both the base level V6 and V8 GT models will get
new six-speed transmissions in automatic and manual versions. The
automatic six-speed provides better fuel economy that the manual
transmission.Ford has offered more details on a future
automatic transmission that will find its way into the 2011
Ford Fiesta that was previewed in December 2009. The new
transmission will also serve duty in the 2012
Ford Focus as well. The new transmission is called the
PowerShift dual-clutch automatic and will help the Fiesta deliver up
to 40 mpg on the highway with fully automatic shifting. The
transmission is being built for Ford by Getrag Americas in Mexico.
The plant that is building the new transmissions was built
specifically for Ford and currently employs 200 workers with that
number expected to double as production increases."We
believe this new automatic transmission for the Fiesta will be the
most advanced in the segment, offering far better performance than
our competitors," said Piero Aversa, team leader for PowerShift
development. "It's an advanced gearbox that reduces complexity,
saves weight, increases responsiveness and performance – all while
helping keep the engine in its peak efficiency mode – resulting in
class-leading fuel economy."The PowerShift
transmission is based on manual transmission technology and
eliminates the need for a torque converter, planetary gears, and
fluid pumps found in typical automatic transmissions. The PowerShift
uses a dual dry sump clutch system. The PowerShift has two
clutches with one clutch working first, third, and fifth gears with
the other clutch working second, fourth, and sixth gears. As
gears shift, each clutch alternately shifts the gears as the other
clutch is disengaged. Ford states that the design of the transmission
is particularly well suited to small cars like the Fiesta and
Focus."A dual dry-clutch transmission provides some real
dividends on small car applications," said Aversa. "PowerShift
with dry-clutch facings and new energy-saving electromechanical
actuation for clutches and gear shifts saves weight, improves
efficiency, increases smoothness, adds durability and is sealed with
low-friction gear lubricant for the life of the vehicle. This
transmission requires no regular maintenance."Ford still
states that it expects to offer six-speed transmissions across 85% of
its vehicles for 2010 and by 2013, its entire range of vehicles will
offer six-speed transmissions."Ford's advanced new
six-speed automatic transmissions will really surprise our customers,
and our competitors," said Barb Samardzich, vice president of
Powertrain Development. "They provide the convenience of
traditional automatics with fuel economy leadership, as well as
responsive performance and driving dynamics that make these cars fun
to drive. And we're adding six-speed transmissions to our most
accessible vehicles, not just our luxury offerings and
quote: The transmission is being built for Ford by Getrag
quote: Is there something like this available in the USA?
quote: Would you rather have a set price you must pay?
quote: No wonder all the horror stories posted in these comments, they start off about right but then move on to rant about financing
quote: There seems to be a lot of "Holy crap! Ford did something right" going around.
quote: At the time of launch in 2003 - it became the world's first dual clutch transmission in a series production car, in the German-market Volkswagen Golf Mk4 R32 and shortly afterwards, worldwide in the original Audi TT 3.2; and for the first few years of production, this original DSG transmission was only available in transversely-orientated front engine, front-wheel drive — or Haldex Traction-based four-wheel drive vehicle layouts.
quote: Why the hell did I get rated down?
quote: Slow moving traffic, I would tend to agree, but bumper to bumper traffic? Heck no.. For an automatic that requires one pedal, the break as when in drive you are always in gear..
quote: Where as a good driver is pro-active, planning ahead for the next gear change and how to perform it.
quote: How well will these DCTs be working with over 200k miles on them?
quote: There is absolutely nothing the DCT can do in this situation.
quote: Yep. Your right, the preselection process is the weak point.
quote: The "economy" models do have a slight delay sometimes when the preselect is wrong
quote: Say, you're on 5th, IF the pre-selected gear is not the one you need
quote: I'm on the highway going 60MPH in 5th gear (let just assume my car has 5 gears), I am forced to suddenly shift lanes and speed up. With my manual I would most likely drop to 4th, get to the speed I need quickly and go back into 5th.
quote: The paddles/selector (if you have them) can help you aleviate some of this, but those shifts will not be as smooth
quote: Usually unless you break something that is solid metal you don't break a manual transmission.
quote: Or you blow a fuse that powers the shifters in the automatic or even the paddle shifters?
quote: If the best performance is what you seek autos are the way to go.
quote: I'd rather have the DCT over a normal manual, because for the most part, DCT with paddle shifters is just as engaging as a typical manual (my left leg does get bored I guess...) and I don't need to worry about who drives the car
quote: how much do you think the delta will be between a DCT and a manual?
quote: even manual windows and locks if you can even get those now days.
quote: Remember even current automatic transmissions can cost you 1.5-2K+ over a manual, how much do you think the delta will be between a DCT and a manual?
quote: sealed with low-friction gear lubricant for the life of the vehicle. This transmission requires no regular maintenance."
quote: Exactly, for me lifetime of a vehicle is just beginning at 250k miles.
quote: Still all that adds up to less than $1k in repairs for a 14 year old vehicle.
quote: Is sealed and not serviceable for maintenance on a car.
quote: THen the person who buys the car used is screwed though. I would never, ever never change the transmission fluid.
quote: If they make it easily repairable then it will last too long and they can't make enough money from repeat business.
quote: Leasing cars is nuts
quote: Also what else can you buy with the difference between that and what a typical lease costs?
quote: Now everything is sealed and doesn't last as long. Planned failure man.