Chrysler CEO committed to use 9-speed gearbox on all fwd models

Article by Andrew Christian, on April 1, 2014

Chrysler chief executive Sergio Marchionne is still committed to employing the new nine-speed automatic transmission on its front-wheel-drive-based models even though software glitches in the gearbox was the prime cause of a two-month delay of the launch of the 2014 Jeep Cherokee.

Chrysler, which licenses the nine-speed technology from ZF Friedrichshafen, will use the transmission in the 2015 Chrysler 200 and Jeep Renegade. Chrysler said it continues to refine the transmission's operating software in the Chrysler 200, confident that the model would be in dealerships as promised in the second quarter.

Unlike the Cherokee, the 200 regularly uses the most fuel-efficient ninth gear during typical operations. Marchionne has said that the nine-speed is the “shortest, most complex transmission you can buy in the marketplace," adding that it features a number of wonderful attributes.

Chrysler is planning to disclose a new five-year business and product plan in early May, but its CEO remarked that the carmaker will spread the nine-speed across its lineup of fwd-based cars, crossovers, minivans and SUVs when they are redesigned or reengineered. Marchionne remarked that some technical changes were already made for the nine-speed.

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