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Automatic cars are becoming more common in India than ever before and automotive manufacturers are also offering a wide variety of automatic transmissions in their cars.
So, here's a quick glance at the common types of automatic transmission used by automobile manufacturers around the world. Furthermore, we have managed to mention its merits and demerits for better understanding.
Dual Clutch Transmission (DCT)
The Dual Clutch Transmission (DCT) is a common type of automatic transmission in performance cars. One of the major advantages of Dual Clutch Transmission is its ability to deliver very fast and smooth gear shifts. Thanks to DCT's ability to shift through gears with minimum lag, it enhances the sportiness and improves driving characteristics.
However, the DCT units use two clutches, as a result, the weight of the DCT gearboxes are on the heavier side. At present, the DCT gearbox is used in cars such as the Hyundai i20, Tata Altroz, Skoda Octavia, Kia Seltos, Hyundai Creta, Kia Sonet and many more.
Automated Manual Transmission (AMT)
Unlike DCT gearboxes, AMT gearboxes are more commonly found in affordable cars. Furthermore, the introduction of Automated Manual Transmission (AMT) in the automobile market has made automatic cars even more affordable and played a vital role in popularising automatic gearboxes in the Indian automobile market.
AMT gearboxes are far more affordable to build and offer good fuel efficiency. However, the gear shifts of AMT gearboxes are not always smooth like other types of automatic transmissions in this list. Recently, the updated 2022 Maruti Suzuki Baleno and Toyota Glanza come with AMT gearbox instead of a CVT gearbox, and these gearboxes can also be found in a majority of budget cars such as Renault Kwid, Maruti Suzuki Celerio and more.
Continuously Variable Transmission (CVT)
Continuously Variable Transmission (CVT) once used to be a very common type of automatic gearbox in budget cars. However, the introduction of the AMT gearbox has resulted in reduced popularity of the CVT gearbox in the automobile industry. At present, only a few cars use CVT transmissions such as Nissan Magnite, MG Astor, Toyota Camry, and a few more.
Unlike other automatic gearboxes, Continuously Variable Transmission (CVT) come with an infinite number of gears. This is because a CVT gearbox uses pulleys and belts instead of gears, and this leads to an infinite number of gears ratios that can change according to speed, load and throttle inputs. Though such technology results in a very smooth driving experience, the presence of the 'Rubber Band' effect has been the transmission's biggest weakness.
Torque Converter automatic gearboxes are very commonly used in a wide variety of cars. In fact, many performance car manufacturers are now preferring Torque Converter gearboxes instead of DCT gearboxes as it offers better reliability and weight advantage. Furthermore, gearshifts are far less noticeable in torque converter gearboxes compared to other types of automatic gearboxes.
This gearbox system uses a type of fluid coupling that transfers power from the engine. Thanks to this system, torque convertor gearboxes offer very smooth gearshifts and also offer decent shift speeds. However, these transmissions are not as fuel-efficient as some other transmission systems in this list. Moreover, Torque Converter automatic transmissions can be found in budget cars like Hyundai Verna to premium cars such as BMW 7 Series.
Thoughts About Automatic Transmissions
Automatic transmissions are becoming more and more common in India as manufacturers are improving the existing technology to offer better mileage, reliability, performance and refinement. Furthermore, some manufacturers are even using automatic transmissions with electric powertrains to achieve better high-speed performance.