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Print 58 comment(s) - last by Skywalker123.. on Jun 11 at 4:08 AM

Special fluid would only allow the driver to choose the correct gear

Walk into a room full of automotive enthusiasts and ask about manual transmissions and you'll likely get mixed responses. Sports car purists think a row-your-own, manual gearbox is the only way to go. However, many feel that the new semi-automatic gearboxes where shifts are made by clicking paddles behind the steering wheel are superior. Based solely on how quickly gear changes can be made, fans of the semi-automatic gearbox have a point.
 
Efficiency and speed aside, many sports car fans won't buy a car without a manual transmission. While BMW sells more cars with automatic or SMG gearboxes, a patent has surfaced that shows the traditional manual transmission still has a place with the BMW brand. The patent shows that BMW is considering a future with manual transmissions that have more than the normal six forward gears common today.
 
Many automatic transmissions are capable of better fuel efficiency than a manual transmission simply due to the fact that some have more forward gears with high seventh or even eight ratios to cut fuel consumption.
 
BMW's patent describes the problem was simply adding more gears to the current six speed manual transmission. The patent reads, "an 8 speed manual transmission would need four shift gates for the 8 gears alone." The problem with adding more gates is that it becomes difficult for the driver to shift gears and the potential for accidentally shifting into a lower gear and damaging the engine by over-rev grows.
 
BMW's solution of adding more gates and the growing complexity for drivers is both insane, and incredibly smart. BMW wants to design a manual transmission that will only allow the driver to shift into the correct gear. Anyone that's accidentally grabbed second on a 4 to 3 shift at speed will appreciate that innovation.
 
BMWs innovation creates shift gates that are surrounded by a magnetorheologic or electrorheologic fluid. That is a complicated way of saying that the fluid would prevent any improper shift when a voltage is applied to change viscosity of the fluid, therefore physically blocking any gear but the correct gear for downshift. The technology could be used on manual transmissions with a clutch pedal or without.
 
BMW sees an interesting potential by creating a shift-by-wire transmission where you can shift gears with a lever without having use a clutch pedal. This would be sort of a combination of an automated SMG and a traditional manual transmission. There is no indication of when this technology might come to market at this time, but it sounds like a very good idea.
 
Porsche already has a seven-speed manual transmission available in the 2012 911.

Source: E90 Post



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RE: Shifter design
By Spuke on 6/7/2012 11:45:42 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
If you are into drag racing, I agree.
Check out the Car and Driver Lightning Lap. Granted they tested the Laguna Seca version but from what I understand the standard Boss 302 is only a second or two behind. The 135i isn't in the same league as the Boss 302. Sorry.

Lap time was 3:02.8. How fast was that? 911 GT3 did it only a second quicker. Where was the 135i? Try 3:13.7. Smoked by the Mustang. To add insult to injury the standard Mustang GT does it in 3:08.6. Half a second quicker than a Lotus Elise.

The new Stang's are just plain fast but I'm still considering a 135i.


RE: Shifter design
By Reclaimer77 on 6/8/2012 11:47:02 AM , Rating: 2
The Boss 302 starts at $42k. Sorry Ford, but the base Corvette is still a better buy.


RE: Shifter design
By Spuke on 6/8/2012 11:36:43 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
The Boss 302 starts at $42k. Sorry Ford, but the base Corvette is still a better buy.
I don't know. You have to get the Grand Sport to get the handling package (no more Z51) and that's considerably more ($56,900 base) than the Boss 302.


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