One of the many solutions automakers have been resorting to in response to super-strict government fuel and CO2 emission mandates includes the use of gearboxes with more forward gears.
The idea there is to have shorty-spaced gears in greater quantities to make more efficient use of the engine’s powerband, smoother acceleration performance, and lower engine speeds while cruising.
Over the past 20 years or so, car’s went from sporting simple three-speed automatics to seven-, eight-, nine-, and even 10-speed cog swappers, some using complicated dual-clutch setups. If you didn’t think that was enough, Ford apparently just filed a patent for an 11-speed automatic.
AutoGuide reports the new news of the filing, which is sort of interesting since we’re already supposed to be expecting the world’s first 10-speed automatic for passenger cars. Ford’s nine- and 10-speed boxes are being developed in conjunction with General Motors.
Of course, patents should be taken with a grain of salt since automakers file patents all the time.
Do you think we need more gears in our automatic transmissions?