ZF announces world’s first 9-speed automatic transmission

Article by Christian A., on January 12, 2011

ZF announced that it has developed world’s first 9-speed automatic transmission for the vehicles equipped with a transversely mounted engine. As expected, the new transmission will improve driving performance and fuel economy. Furthermore, the transmission will feature an advanced shock absorber system in the torque converter, which will allow it to rapidly lock up of the converter clutch, in order to deliver lower carbon dioxide emissions.

Moreover, just like the ZF 8-speed automatic transmissions used by the rear-drive platforms, the new 9-speed transmission will deliver extremely short response and shifting times, which are described by the company as being “below the threshold of perception.”

ZF will build this this transmission in a new state-of-the-art manufacturing facility near Greenville, South Carolina. The new transmission will also carry the same precise, sporty attributes found in ZF's transmissions for rear-drive vehicles, which means it will deliver excellent shift characteristics, immediate response to input and exceptional smoothness.

The ZF’s brand new automatic transmission with 9 speeds will offer an improved driving experience and fuel economy in comparison to traditional models that offer an automatic transmission with 6 speeds.

There is a cutting-edge shock absorber system located in the torque converter, which enables the quick locking up of the converter clutch. This in turn means that the fuel economy is enhanced and the CO2 emissions are significantly lowered.

Just like the 8-speed automatic transmission you operate with rear-drive vehicles, the brand new ZF’s 9-speed offers very short responsiveness and incredibly low shifting times. This means that double shifts and multiple gearshifts might happen so fast that the driver and passengers can’t even perceive them.

There are top-notch electronic controls that make sure that an appropriate gear is chosen, which means you are safe from constant shifting or any needless stepping.

The new 9-speed automatic transmission has the exact same precision of ZF’s transmission systems for rear-drive platforms, as well as great shifting characteristics, prompt responsiveness to input and state-of-the-art smoothness.

Press Release

ZF Develops 9-Speed Automatic Transmission for Passenger Cars

- The world's first 9-speed automatic passenger car transmission for front-drive vehicles.

- Significant improvements in fuel economy expected.

- To be built at a new facility near Greenville, S.C.

DETROIT, Jan. 11, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- ZF has developed the world's first 9-speed automatic transmission for vehicles equipped with a transversely mounted engine. It will be built in a new, state-of-the-art manufacturing facility near Greenville, South Carolina.

"Already a leader in technically advanced, fuel-saving multi-speed transmissions for rear-drive vehicles, ZF's new 9-speed enables significant fuel economy improvements and delivers excellent performance characteristics for front-wheel-drive vehicles," said Hans-Georg Harter, ZF's President and CEO.

Groundbreaking for the new South Carolina factory takes place next month. Production and application details will be released later.

Fuel economy and increased performance

Compared to conventional 6-speed automatic transmissions for front-drive platforms, ZF's new 9-speed automatic transmission enhances driving performance and fuel economy. An advanced shock absorber system in the torque converter, for example, allows rapid lock up of the converter clutch, enabling greater fuel economy and lower carbon dioxide emissions.

Similar to ZF's 8-speed automatic transmission used in rear-drive platforms, the new 9-speed delivers extremely short response and shifting times that are below the threshold of perception. That means double shifts and direct multiple gearshifts occur without the driver or passenger noticing.

Sophisticated electronic controls select the right gear for the driving conditions, eliminating unnecessary "stepping" – or constant shifting. In this regard, the 9-speed carries the same precise, sporty attributes found in ZF's transmissions for rear-drive vehicles, including excellent shift characteristics, immediate response to input and exceptional smoothness.

Topics: transmission

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