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Automakers hope to save millions of dollars with joint development

Ford and General Motors have announced that they have teamed up to jointly develop a new generation of advanced 9- and 10-speed transmissions that will be used in cars, crossovers, SUVs, and trucks.
 
The automakers say that the new transmissions will increase both performance and fuel economy. Engineering and development work for the transmissions is currently underway.

“Engineering teams from GM and Ford have already started initial design work on these new transmissions,” said Jim Lanzon, GM vice president of global transmission engineering. “We expect these new transmissions to raise the standard of technology, performance and quality for our customers while helping drive fuel economy improvements into both companies' future product portfolios.”

Automakers need every edge they can get to meet the looming federal CAFE guidelines set to go into effect over the next several years. With a greater number of gear ratios available in the transmission, the engine can operate at more efficient RPMs, which in turn leads to improved fuel economy.
 
Some industry analysts believe that a nine-speed automatic transmission could increase fuel economy by five to ten percent compared to the same vehicle using a six-speed transmission.
 
The two companies have collaborated on transmission technology in the past. Ford and GM previously collaborated to build a six-speed transmission for front-wheel drive cars. Ford currently uses the six-speed transmission and vehicle such as the Fusion and Edge. GM uses the transmission in the Malibu and Cruze among others.
 
Chrysler is currently using an eight-speed automatic transmission in some of its automobiles, including its popular line of trucks.

Source: GM



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Continuously Variable Transmission (CVT)
By Jim Vanus on 4/15/2013 9:55:07 AM , Rating: 2
There must be some reason that this new transmission design will outperform the CVT. Anyone know why?




RE: Continuously Variable Transmission (CVT)
By FITCamaro on 4/15/2013 10:02:17 AM , Rating: 3
You know at this number of gear ratios, I almost see the value of trying to create a CVT that can handle real loads.


RE: Continuously Variable Transmission (CVT)
By ltfields on 4/15/2013 10:27:30 AM , Rating: 2
I was always a bit curious about the pros and cons of CVT versus traditional automatic transmissions, and other than complexity and maybe some issues with heavy loads, it didn't seem like there would be a case for regular transmissions anymore. I'd love to know people's arguments one way or the other...


RE: Continuously Variable Transmission (CVT)
By GulWestfale on 4/15/2013 10:51:04 AM , Rating: 1
audi offers a CVT (multitronic) in some of its models, including versions of the A4, A6, A7, and A8 capable of handling loads of up to 400NM. wouldn't it make more sense to develop a stronger version of such a CVT than to develop a conventional automatic with a ridiculous number of gears?


RE: Continuously Variable Transmission (CVT)
By fteoath64 on 4/16/2013 8:47:59 AM , Rating: 1
The big problem with CVT is that it cannot handle high loads and it wears out after some time (ie unreliable compared to traditional manual or automatic). I think after 4-5 years the tranny needs a serious overhaul that will cost a fair bit. Unlike manual trannies that lasts for 15 years or more just clutch needs changing every 3-4 years.

More R&D is needed for CVTs that would be strong enough to last and cheap enough to be usable in all ranges of cars. This magic point has yet to be met. Audi's multitronic is one of the nicest with cone based rollers but it is limited to I think 500HP and 400NM torque. Turbo cars easily exceed this rating. CVT when used are most efficient provided electronics are clever enough to "shift" the dynamic ratios correctly for load. One would expect using CVT with electric motors would be a great thing.
Having more ratios (ie 10 gears) and shifting between them are just the way of emulating CVT to conserve power.


By zephyrprime on 4/16/2013 5:33:46 PM , Rating: 2
Yeah but electric motors can adjust torque by using a variable number of rotors.


By grant3 on 4/17/2013 1:37:33 AM , Rating: 4
Not true at all. For example, Nissan's first generation CVTs shipped in '03 with 10-year warranties. I have seen no complaints of abnormal repairs needed. Most drivers don't even need to replace the lubricant during that 10 years.

As for limited to "only" 500hp... how many people drive cars that are more powerful that? Let's solve the issue for the other 99% first...

Personally, after owning a CVT vehicle for 2 years (murano) I love the power delivery and loathe to return to anything with gears.


RE: Continuously Variable Transmission (CVT)
By BRB29 on 4/15/2013 11:27:18 AM , Rating: 2
CVT actually cost less to make than traditional auto transmissions. The premium we're all paying is the front load of R&D cost. In time it will get cheaper. There's cars that have them as standard already.

You won't see CVT in trucks for a long time simply because gears are much stronger than belts. Eventually, we will see CVT in trucks but probably will never see it in any heavy duty applications.

For regular cars, CVT is cheaper, fuel efficient, lighter, and possibly faster(if it is tuned for it). CVTs are so slow because it was tuned for efficiency and was not built for high performance.

Personally, I like gears over CVT. I prefer to drive a manual on the weekend and swap my own gears.


RE: Continuously Variable Transmission (CVT)
By tastyratz on 4/15/2013 11:42:57 AM , Rating: 2
And so is the fault of CVT. What surprises me however is how belt reliant we are. A specially made toothed chain and helically ground worm gears could make a strong CVT if they could get it right... but as long as it relies on a belt we will see CVT problems.


By BRB29 on 4/15/2013 1:31:30 PM , Rating: 2
Because the cost would be high initially and no one would buy it. They would have to put it in premium vehicles but those buyers don't care much for mpg. They won't usually buy a CVT vehicle unless it is the current hippest hybrid/EV


By Mint on 4/16/2013 5:40:58 AM , Rating: 2
You can't use teeth in a CVT, as there will always be a discontinuity somewhere. Worm gears have metal to metal sliding and probably even worse for reliability than a metal belt.

There are CVTs without belts. Nissan has what they call the Extroid CVT that uses rollers. It's touted as a high torque solution.


By Samus on 4/15/2013 2:05:32 PM , Rating: 2
Ford and GM have had an excellent relationship joint-developing transmissions and drive-train components. GM has stronger transmission engineering and Ford has stronger differential and rear-end engineering, and the companies have recently (circa 2006) begun sharing technologies to better compete with the Japanese (which I should add Ford also works closely with for hybrid drive-trains and motors)

Overall the industry is very harmonious compared to the technology industry where everybody is at each others throats.


RE: Continuously Variable Transmission (CVT)
By Sazabi19 on 4/15/2013 2:31:32 PM , Rating: 3
I was thinking the same thing as I read this article. Provided we keep adding gears why not just let it vary the whole time to make it more efficient. My '11 Nissan Rogue has a CVT and it seems fine enough. About 180hp, while not great, gets my AWD vehicle moving adequately. I do have to admit though, it does whine a lot at anything past 2.5k rmps.


By inperfectdarkness on 4/15/2013 4:14:46 PM , Rating: 2
You will never see a CVT capable of handling 500+ whp. For that matter, I don't if any CVT has ever been certified to a towing capacity of anything larger than a bicycle.

I'm very happy to see 8+ speed transmissions. I feel that the time is long overdue, especially considering the wake of the oil crises during the 1970's. From my perspective, DCT's are the only other technology worth pursuing. CVT's and rowing-machines belong in the garbage bin.


RE: Continuously Variable Transmission (CVT)
By Howard on 4/15/2013 6:50:49 PM , Rating: 3
Well, that's just, like, your opinion, man.

Seriously though, CVTs work very well for certain applications. It's a stupid opinion that blindly disregards the benefits of any given technology in order to disparage it.


By ianweck on 4/16/2013 1:37:45 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
Well, that's just, like, your opinion, man.


Love it.


By grant3 on 4/17/2013 1:39:36 AM , Rating: 2
My '06 murano has a CVT and it's rated for towing up to 3,500 lbs.

That's a LOT of bicycles. A whole trailer full.


RE: Continuously Variable Transmission (CVT)
By DanNeely on 4/15/2013 10:13:26 AM , Rating: 2
I'm assuming that CVTs have some overhead that makes them marginally less efficient than a conventional transmission operating at the sweetspots for its gears.

Semis have 20+ gear manual transmissions. If a CVT could best the performance of that the trucking industry would've jumped all over them; when you're driving ~100k miles/year at ~5MPG even a 1 or 2% boost in economy is real money.


RE: Continuously Variable Transmission (CVT)
By teldar on 4/15/2013 11:43:51 AM , Rating: 3
Ding Ding Ding

MY brother, an engineer who works for Magna but at and with Ford on power train projects, told me that CVT's are only about 60% efficient. This was a few years ago, so maybe they are more like 65% efficient or more. They really made sense because transmissions were primarily 4 gears and a CVT could run in an engine's most efficient power band basically all the time.

With 10 gears in a transmission, CVT's lose the benefit of being the only thing able to operate at the ideal RPM range so their built-in inefficiencies end up outweighing the benefits. They may be cheap and light and reasonably efficient, but when you have a transmission that beats its efficiency by 10-20%...


RE: Continuously Variable Transmission (CVT)
By yomamafor1 on 4/15/2013 12:45:30 PM , Rating: 2
Actually, CVT's efficiency hovers around 88~93%, where AT has efficiency of around 83%

http://www.zeroshift.com/pdf/Seamless%20AMT%20Offe...

This is why CVT variant of the vehicles get more MPG out of AT variants. I can't for the life of me understand why people think CVT is less efficient than AT.


By alpha754293 on 4/15/2013 1:27:08 PM , Rating: 2
DISCLAIMER: I am speaking for myself and not my employer.

yea...I don't know if I buy into the Zeroshift link. They have a cyclical reference (the source of their information points to another publication they wrote). That's about as reliable as someone saying "I am God" (claiming themselves). Which also raises the question - seriously? You couldn't find another source?

So I wouldn't put too much weight on that.

CVT efficiencies are HIGHLY proprietary info. 60-80% seems about right though from all the stuff that I've read.


RE: Continuously Variable Transmission (CVT)
By alpha754293 on 4/15/2013 1:55:08 PM , Rating: 2
DISCLAIMER: I am speaking for myself and not my employer.

It also depends on whether you are looking at the CVT itself or as the entire transmission system.

I found one SAE Paper (SAE 2005-01-1467) where the CVT that they modelled can be as high as 95% efficient (CVT only, although the graph is kinda hard to read), but as an entire system (power- and drivetrain), it only about 35% efficienct). You'll have to look up their paper for all of their modelling assumptions, but that's all that I've been able to find so far. (There are other papers from JSAE that I don't have access to so I don't know if it has better information there.)

Source: Kanphet, P., Jirawattana, P., and Boonsrang Direcksataporn. (2005.) "Optimal Operation and Control of a Hydrostatic CVT Powertrain", Khon Kaen University, Transmissions and Drivelines Symposium–4WD/AWD, 2005 SAE World Congress, SAE International. SAE 2005-01-1467.


RE: Continuously Variable Transmission (CVT)
By Colin1497 on 4/15/2013 3:56:57 PM , Rating: 2
As I recall, CVT efficiency falls off quite a bit as power goes up because you drive more friction into the system, so CVT's can be more efficient with low power engines but decline in efficiency rapidly as engine power increases.


RE: Continuously Variable Transmission (CVT)
By theKeener on 4/19/2013 8:55:46 AM , Rating: 2
I put 100,000 miles on 2003 Nissan Murano. That thing had a standard transmission fluid cooler in radiator, a stacked plate heat exchanger cooler that actually bypassed the engine (ie coolant can go through engine or transmission cooler) that was electronically controlled and a huge air scoop and fins on the transmission pan. I'm no expert but I would say that much heat in the fluid indicates it is less efficient than a standard automatic.

I researched them quite a bit before I purchased this car. The Xtronic CVT Nissan uses relies on a metal belt made up of a few steel cables and circular stack of interlocking trapezoidal metal plates. Torque is transferred on the push side of the belt. The best description I found was imagine pushing a rope, when pushed the rope becomes stiff. The metal plates interlock and the driven pulley is 'pushed' by the drive pulley. It's very ingenious and requires very careful control of the hydraulic pressure inside the two variable diameter pulleys the belt rides on.

CVT's by their very nature must rely on friction to transfer torque, hence the heat I imagine.

As far as my subjective opinion. CVT's dull the driving experience. I think they have their place in economy cars but not for enthusiasts or sport oriented driving. WOT acceleration is a painful, droning thrash stuck at 6500 rpm, ugh! The Murano was certainly fast enough for long distance travel and passing zones but not much fun on twisty roads. I'll take my old 5 speed M3 any day over this modern technology.

I'm glad to see more gears being developed. Solves the economy problem of needing a super overdrive gear without the soul-less droning engine you get with a CVT.

BTW, the torque converter lock up clutch in most modern automatics makes them almost as efficient as a manual at cruising speeds. We've had those for 15 years.


By alpha754293 on 4/19/2013 2:46:57 PM , Rating: 2
DISCLAIMER: I am speaking for myself and not my employer.

I'm not 100% sure on the Murano CVT thermal management design, but I can tell you this: car makers hate to put duplicate or redundant systems unless they absolutely have to. So if there are two coolers, chances are - there's a REALLY good reason why both would exist (and switching between one to another is probably also due to a REALLY good reason (out of necessity) and not because they feel like it.)

Yeah, that's pretty much how double conical CVTs work. (Sorry, I always keep thinking that that's just general knowledge, but maybe it isn't.) Uh...the pressure controller probably isn't as accurate as you might think is necessary.

The thing that people forget is that everything is designed with a reason/purpose in mind. If you're trying to hit 54.5 mpg with a 6-speed, it's going to be INCREDIBLY difficult for you.

The fundamental operating principle/reason why CVTs were invented was to always be running at the peak/optimial efficiency at a given load with a given torque output/transfer. It was supposed to be about peak efficiency, but people being people - were complaining about how they don't feel the shifts blah blah blah, so we had to change the shift program to deal with that and take it away from its true purpose.

I LOVE how people think that accelerating MUST mean that your revs change instead of revving the piss outta the engine while the torque is being transferred in a controlled manner. It's no different (in principle of operation) as slowly letting out the clutch on a traditional manual. *rolls eyes*...sigh....

CVTs make it "dull" because you can't have a discontinuous torque function. You don't get the abrupt changes in torque like you do with discrete gears. In theory, there's nothing that says that you can't design the control algorithm to allow for rapid changes to the conical controller, but you might end up with jerky shifting under normal operation (cruising), which now adds the complexity of having a variable pressure valve in the hydraulics which also now means you need a controller for the valve assembly AND the controller for the conicals. Which means extra cost. Which people don't want to pay for.

Some AMTs/SMTs have electrohydraulic clutch packs that make the entire transmission more efficient than traditional manuals. And they're also already working on an e-clutch (in case people here aren't aware of that). It's been going on for a few years actually.


By Jim Vanus on 4/17/2013 9:30:11 AM , Rating: 2
Good point.

Some of the comments indicate that it is possible to build CVTs that can handle high torque applications. Perhaps they don't last as long in such applications.

In any case, the trucking industry would likely do anything possible to reduce fuel & maintenance costs.


RE: Continuously Variable Transmission (CVT)
By HammerFan on 4/15/2013 10:20:21 AM , Rating: 2
As FITCamaro alluded to, there is not yet a CVT that can handle high torque loads (>300ft.lbs) and to build one that could would probably not be any better than a multi-planetary box in terms of fuel savings or acceleration performance.


By km9v on 4/15/2013 10:30:19 AM , Rating: 3
Gears are stronger than belts.


By fleshconsumed on 4/15/2013 10:47:42 AM , Rating: 2
Maybe not for trucks, but CVTs are perfectly fine for regular 4 door sedans. Nissan has been pairing CVTs with V6 engines for years now, and Subaru is putting CVT into 2014 Forester XT that puts out 258lb-ft. Obviously the CVT is still not beefy enough for trucks and high performance V8 cars, but it serves mainstream market very well.


RE: Continuously Variable Transmission (CVT)
By yomamafor1 on 4/15/2013 12:58:34 PM , Rating: 2
That's false. Case IH Magnum series tractors are equipped with CVTs. I'm pretty damn sure tractors have higher load than regular trucks.

I think the only issue right now is weight and size of the CVT.


RE: Continuously Variable Transmission (CVT)
By djc208 on 4/15/2013 1:45:43 PM , Rating: 2
Is it actually a CVT or are the wheels hydraulicaly driven like on lots of heavy equipment? Then it's just regulating pressure and flow, which is easy.


RE: Continuously Variable Transmission (CVT)
By Spuke on 4/15/2013 2:16:57 PM , Rating: 2
RE: Continuously Variable Transmission (CVT)
By anoldnewb on 4/15/2013 7:26:52 PM , Rating: 2
this tractor transmission is a combo mechanical/hydrostatic - totally different than CVT in cars. http://www.caseih.com/en_us/PressRoom/News/Pages/2... The maximum engine power is 195 PTO HP. Not super high, but it can deliver it 7days x 24hrs.


By alpha754293 on 4/19/2013 2:58:05 PM , Rating: 2
DISCLAIMER: I am speaking for myself and not my employer.

Re: Case IH CVT
note - I have NOT been able to find ANY statistics on the torque carrying capacity for said CVT and I've also NOT been able to find the duty cycle loading limit graph for said CVT.

Those are two SUPER important parameters.

It's so easy to design/engineer the CVT chain/belt to take like 1000 N.m. Your limiting factor would probably be the link pins. And you can design that to only take 1000 cycles. But to design one that costs a few hundred dollars per part (max. to a few dollars), with very tight packaging constraints, using widely available materials, that can take 1e9 cycles - THAT's why it doesn't exist. It's not that it CAN'T be done, but there are a LOT of constraints that are placed on top of the engineering problem that affect it.

And if I remember correctly, the Case IH Magnum tractors were like $150,000-300,000. I'm pretty sure if Pagani or Porsche came up with a $1,000,000 car that has a CVT in it that can handle like 1500 N.m - there'd be people out there asking "WHYYY???" and complain about how pointless or trivial such a car would be.

And 195 PTO HP is nothing if doing like 5000 rpm. But 195 PTO HP is a LOT at 1000 rpm.


RE: Continuously Variable Transmission (CVT)
By danjw1 on 4/15/2013 11:57:12 AM , Rating: 2
I know that CVTs have a not insignificant loss associated with the. I believe a inventor in Australia had a lossless CVT, not sure what ever happened to that.


By BRB29 on 4/15/2013 1:29:47 PM , Rating: 2
there's no such things as lossless CVT. It's impossible with anything mechanical. Especially when you add a belt to it. It takes energy to turn the gears/cones and the belt. It also has friction which is why the transmission will be warm. Lossless is a dream.


RE: Continuously Variable Transmission (CVT)
By alpha754293 on 4/15/2013 1:10:49 PM , Rating: 2
DISCLAIMER: I am speaking on behalf of me and not my employer.

From an automotive engineers perspective, based on what I've learned about them, although I don't have anything to do with them or their development - there are several reasons why high number of gears would be preferred over CVT.

Here's what I think:
CVTs work because they depend on friction to transmit torque. Friction - generally, in mechanical components is treated as a parasitic loss, which is, in short - just plain bad. So the problem with developing CVTs is how do you distinguish between good friction (friction that's required to propel the vehicle forward) from bad friction (the parasitic loss kind)? And being able to reliably predict what happens is a bit of an issue.

You can always make the chain stronger in a CVT, but it gets a LOT heavier for the higher loads. CAN it be done? Yes. Absolutely. But it's probably not recommend. (I couldn't find any ACTUAL examples of off-highway CVTs; but there's probably some that are buried deep within certain respective skunkworks.)

The basics of automatic transmission design actually isn't that complicated. Well, it is and it isn't. The fundamental geartrain (the planteary gear system) is quite well known (and even different forms of it like Ravigneaux vs. LePelletier etc.) is quite well understood (in terms of how they work). So, it's operation is pretty simple/straightforward. And you can quickly get more gear ratios by the multiplicative effect of geartrains. For example, if you have a double-Ravigneaux (each Ravigneaux should give you three speeds because of the double planet gears), 3*3 = 9 speeds. If they don't use all of them, there's usually some other type of constraint/restraint (like packaging all of the components) that would limit the actual number of planets/suns/rings that can be locked.

The controls get more complicated. And the fluid carrying module also gets a LOT more complicated.

But the thing with having a lot of gears is well a couple of things: 1) You really get peak shock torque loading in low speeds (standing start in 0-60). As you get higher and higher up in gears (say changing from 7-8 or 8-9) - the reality is that even at wide open throttle, the torque difference won't nearly be as great, which means you can size the gear to the torque carrying capacity plus some safety factor or the DIFFERENCE in torque carrying capacity. (The chances that going from 9-8 via WOT is going to break your transmission is REALLY REALLY slim. Your engine speed doesn't increase that much so your torque likely isn't going to jump by that much either. It's a lot "harder" if say...you jump from 9-5.)

The other reason is because people complain about the transmission not "shifting" with CVTs. yeah...People actually do say that. So, CVTs end up having to be programmed with "shift points" where it causes noticeable changes in torque, which really reduces the efficiency or the point of having a CVT to begin with.

And you can size all the components to be quite small, and if you go with a different steel alloy, you might be able to get away with using a higher strength steel or a different coating/heat treatment (for example) which also allows you to reduce the size even further. You run into some size limits particularly with the clutches in the clutch packs. (Those still rely on surface area for action; although that's changing too. Ever so slightly.)


RE: Continuously Variable Transmission (CVT)
By Colin1497 on 4/15/2013 4:01:23 PM , Rating: 2
"The other reason is because people complain about the transmission not "shifting" with CVTs. yeah...People actually do say that. So, CVTs end up having to be programmed with "shift points" where it causes noticeable changes in torque, which really reduces the efficiency or the point of having a CVT to begin with."

I've always assumed that in cars with this ridiculous CVT programming to avoid "CVT drone" that they would offer you an efficiency mode to override the stupid fake gear programming.

Anyone with a CVT car have this? Or are you stuck with fake gears?


RE: Continuously Variable Transmission (CVT)
By cyberguyz on 4/15/2013 5:10:39 PM , Rating: 2
While I won't own a car with a CVT, I have driven them. What I don't like is that when you put your foot into them tthey initially rev up then settle back down to that really boring drone. You just don't get the same seat-of-pants feel that you get with gears (manual, auto or dual clutch). CVTs are just plain freaking boring to drive.

Maybe it is just me having grown up with 4 decades of geared vehicles. Perhaps the younger, less ingrained drivers will enhance CCVTs, but for me, I will take Ford's quirky dual clutch auto (though I have had absolutely zero issues with mine) over a cvt any day.


By alpha754293 on 4/19/2013 3:07:33 PM , Rating: 2
DISCLAIMER: I am speaking for myself and not my employer.

@Colin1497

"I've always assumed that in cars with this ridiculous CVT programming to avoid "CVT drone" that they would offer you an efficiency mode to override the stupid fake gear programming.

Anyone with a CVT car have this? Or are you stuck with fake gears?"

Oh...if only.

@cyberguyz
See my reply above about having an extra controller for the variable hydraulic pressure valve. CAN it be done? Yes. For pennies-per-trans? *shrug* mehhh...

If you have intimate working knowledge of a particular CVT, and you have intimate engineering knowledge, you probably override that. Whether it'll last 250,000 customer equilvalent miles (or whatever) - well...mehhh....

It's an exciting time to be an automotive engineer right now because there are SO many options which leads to SO many more possibilities with all of the different combinations that you can come up with and then trying to find out what's the best, most optimal solution based on how you defined and weighed each of the performance targets and criteria.

It has to paired with your engine so that it's suitable. If you're doing a lot of ultra urban driving; doing that in a Ford GT would just be maddening cuz you'd hardly get out of 1st. But if you're doing 50,000 miles a year, 80% of which is highway (like I do) - I'm going to spend all of that time in top gear, so what does it matter whether it's a CVT or not?


RE: Continuously Variable Transmission (CVT)
By Cobblers on 4/17/2013 9:03:15 AM , Rating: 2
If anyone has any doubts about the progress that has been made in developing CVT/IVT transmissions, or of the loads they can cope with, then take a look at the fully toroidal (disc & roller) IVT (Infinitely Variable Transmission) solutions developed by a British company, Torotrak:

http://www.torotrak.com/products-partners/products...

Video of the IVT design:
http://www.torotrak.com/products-partners/case-stu...

Video of a Carraro tractor in action, fitted with a VaryT (Torotrak IVT) transmission:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iDX5q-Kdw_0

- and no, I don't work for them.

- Allison have invested in them, by the way.


RE: Continuously Variable Transmission (CVT)
By Jim Vanus on 4/17/2013 10:07:12 AM , Rating: 2
Thanks. That's a very promising technology that appears ready for manufacture in large numbers and for many applications. I see it will first be used for transmissions in heavy equipment and urban trucks/buses, as a variable drive supercharger for gasoline and diesel engines, and as a kinetic energy recovery system for trucks/buses.

I hope that a car manufacturer decides to use it. The IVT certainly looks like a better mousetrap.


By Cobblers on 4/17/2013 2:59:11 PM , Rating: 2
"I hope that a car manufacturer decides to use it."

~~~

Well, several have taken a very close look at the use of the IVT, particularly as part of an M-KERS (Mechanical KERS system ) including Volvo:

http://www.torotrak.com/products-partners/products...

http://www.torotrak.com/news/2011/05/torotrak-tech...


progress
By chromal on 4/15/2013 9:48:15 AM , Rating: 3
It's nice to see continued technology advances in automatic transmissions. I'll keep right on buying my cars with manual gearboxes, of course.




RE: progress
By 7Enigma on 4/15/2013 12:25:06 PM , Rating: 1
Until there are none left....and no one who knows how to drive one if you are ever incapacitated and your passenger(s) need to drive you somewhere in an emergency!

(2000 Trans Am, modified, 6-speed, dodo bird)


RE: progress
By 7Enigma on 4/15/2013 12:26:37 PM , Rating: 1
Forgot to add:

More moving parts = more chances to break = more complex to DIY fix = profit for the dealer/manufacturer which is where the real money is in auto sales.


RE: progress
By cyberguyz on 4/15/2013 5:16:22 PM , Rating: 2
The ever growing number of gear sets being introduced in auto transmissions scare the crap out of me. 4,5 and 6 speed trannys are complex enough, but 8, 9 and 10 speed slushboxes are just out of control.

How tough is it to create an engine that is efficient living in the rev bands available with 6 gear ratios? is 8-10 speeds really needed?


RE: progress
By ChronoReverse on 4/15/2013 6:52:05 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
How tough is it to create an engine that is efficient living in the rev bands available with 6 gear ratios?


It's very hard.


RE: progress
By Kaldor on 4/16/2013 12:54:42 PM , Rating: 2
Yes it is, but at what point do we hit where adding more complexity, and the expense that comes with it, to a vehicle actually pays off? Right now vehicles as a whole are becoming more expensive to buy, much more difficult (expensive) to fix and are not really gaining that much fuel efficiency or emissions reductions. I for one would rather pay $15-20K less for a vehicle that gets 2 less MPG. I can buy alot of gas for that money and I guarantee that vehicle will be a hell of alot easier to work on.

There has to be an end somewhere. The government ramming more rules an regulations down the throat of the car companies is not the answer. The car companies only push that down to the consumer. Consumer sees price going up, doesnt buy cars, which hurts the car companies. Thank you big government.

I can see government mandated emissions and honestly any modern engine from the last 50 years that is tuned correctly can pass emissions. Im all for protecting the environment. However the constant raising of the mileage standard is getting ridiculous.


RE: progress
By 7Enigma on 4/19/2013 11:49:54 AM , Rating: 2
What I want is for automakers to realize that current target gear ratio's are not great for average drivers. My Trans Am has a great low 6th gear that is wonderful for the highway speeds most of us drive (70-80 on major roads), but my Mazda 3's 5th gear at those speeds is buzzing at 3k+ rpms and would be much more fuel efficient if it was lower. The Mazda of course still gets better mileage than the T/A, but it could be even better.

Here's my request: Give us a short first gear for get up and go, second a bit more moderate, and third/forth (and if possible a 5th gear) that are much more spaced out for normal driving conditions (sweet spot of 40-60-75mph). Overnight that would raise REAL fuel economy levels across the boards. No one is driving 55mph on highways where all the CAFE standards and quoted MPG figures are derived from...


RE: progress
By D_a_n on 4/22/2013 12:51:56 AM , Rating: 2
It depends on where you live. 55 MPH highways are not uncommon in parts of Ohio.


Bad case of not invented here
By kep55 on 4/16/2013 4:01:36 PM , Rating: 2
ZF already makes an 8 speed. It seems it would make more sense to team with ZF to modify their box as well as be a lot cheaper. Or is Ford still PO'd at ZF?




By alpha754293 on 4/19/2013 3:11:51 PM , Rating: 2
DISCLAIMER: I am speaking for myself and not my employer.

It has nothing to do with that. You can't just "modify" an 8-speed and turn it into a 9-speed.

If you're doing from a Ravigneaux to a double LePelletier; you're effectively redesigning the whole thing. (You can start off with modifying it, but then you're going to VERY quickly realize that you're going to pretty much have to modify EVERYTHING, that it's going to be easier/better to just start from scratch).

That's like saying that you want to get an inline 5 (like the Volvo T5) out of an inline 4 by "modify it".


By 7bit on 4/15/2013 9:46:59 PM , Rating: 3
All this talk about CVT seems odd to me after reading about Paul Pires' geared IVT Infinitely Variable Transmission developed a couple decades ago. His IVT is used in a heavy diesel tractor with lots of torque, it doesn't have CVT's shortcomings and sounds better than even 10 gear autos.

It seems like auto companies only want to use solutions they own the rights to, even partial rights, so long as they are "good enough", to hell with what works best...

Paul Pires' solution to creating the geared IVT is actually quite ingenious and cross-specialty in nature.

Below is a link to the Aug 1992 Popular Science article that introduced me to Paul Pires (Epilogics Inc.) IVT years ago, plenty of pics too; thanks go out to Google-Books:

http://books.google.com/books?id=mgEAAAAAMBAJ&pg=P...




Joint venture
By mecuetksk on 4/15/2013 11:17:05 AM , Rating: 2
another joint venture by two technology giants
http://www.bestinnovativesource.com/2013/04/15/for...




Cool...
By BaronMatrix on 4/15/2013 10:40:29 PM , Rating: 2
Now they should collab on the next Volt-type tech... How perfect is that...?




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