Ford GETRAG PowerShift transmission production begins

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Ford and GETRAG Americas, a joint venture, began to built the new PowerShift transmission in Irapuato, Mexico. The new dual-clutch automatic six-speed transmission is produced for small fuel-efficient cars, like the Ford Fiesta, to deliver fuel economy rating of at least 40 mpg on the highway with the convenience of fully automatic shifting.

Behind the PowerShift transmission’s technology is the dual dry-clutch, which eliminated the traditional torque converter, planetary gears and the fluid pumps employed in traditional automatic transmissions. The PowerShift transmissioin is electronically controlled by a twin internal clutches to shift gears quickly and smoothly, providing a seamless flow of torque without the jerkiness.

“We believe this new automatic transmission for the Fiesta will be the most advanced in the segment, offering far better performance than our competitors,” said Piero Aversa, team leader for PowerShift development. “It’s an advanced gearbox that reduces complexity, saves weight, increases responsiveness and performance – all while helping keep the engine in its peak efficiency mode – resulting in class-leading fuel economy.”

“A dual dry-clutch transmission provides some real dividends on small car applications,” said Aversa. “PowerShift with dry-clutch facings and new energy-saving electromechanical actuation for clutches and gear shifts saves weight, improves efficiency, increases smoothness, adds durability and is sealed with low-friction gear lubricant for the life of the vehicle. This transmission requires no regular maintenance.”

The PowerShift transmission will be available by this summer in combination with the 1.6-liter inline-4 cylinder engine in the 2011 Ford Fiesta. Fuel economy is expected to be less 40 miles per gallon with this engine and Powershift transmission setup.