As there is demand for less thirsty cars, there is a lot of pressure on the engine department to deliver better fuel efficiency. However, the engine segment can’t singly handle the aggressive fuel-economy figures. To aid improved fuel economy and uncompromised performance, engineers at Chrysler are developing 9-speed transmission for the front-wheel-drive cars in Chrysler portfolio.
As we are aware, the American automotive giant already has an 8-speed automatic transmission catering some of its vehicles. According to The Detroit Press, Chrysler will be expanding the range of its 8-speed transmission cars, while it will develop new 9-speed transmission for its entire FWD lineup.
The 8-speed automatic transmission will join the new lineup by the end of the current calendar, while the manufacture of 9-speed is slated for 2013. To keep things on track, Chrysler is investing a sum of $1.3 billion in training workers and updating the production lines at three plants in Kokomo, Indiana. Currently, the 8-speed automatic gearbox is developed by ZF part supply company in Germany.
Both the gearboxes are developed under the association of ZF. Chrysler is eyeing to improve the fuel-economy figure of the car with the new family of transmissions. The federal Corporate Average Fuel Economy is cut down to 35.5 mpg by 2015. With the new 8-speed transmission, the fuel economy is expected to go up by 25 percent by 2014.
We have previously reported about BMW working on a new 7-speed transmission for its lineup, while Mercedes has already announced a 9-speed gearbox for the new S Class.