The Different Types of Automatic Transmissions

Today, there are many types and categories of gearboxes that are present in all cars. The two main categories are automatic and manual gearboxes; however, in each of these categories there are other subcategories which have their own characteristics. Let's find out more about the different types of automatic transmissions.

Conventional automatic transmissions

These use a " couple convertor " to perform the work of the coupling and are more sophisticated than the other automatic transmissions, but consume more fuel than the manual ones. Premium cars like the Range Rover and Volvo XC90 are offered with a standard automatic gearbox, which uses up to 9 speeds.

Continuously Variable Transmission (CVT)

CVTs are common in hybrid vehicles like the Toyota Prius because they eliminate the gears in favor of a single drive train that acts as a single transmission ratio. In addition to being more efficient and reliable, they also allow for a smoother ride, as the car doesn't have to shift from one gear to another. The downside is slower acceleration than other automatic transmissions, and a loud, strained engine noise can occur if you're trying to move quickly.

Double-clutch automatic

These kinds of transmissions are like a conventional automatic transmission, but two clubs ( automatically actuated ) take the place of the torque converter. They line up the gears alternately, which means that the next gear is prepared and allows for quick shifts. They are popular in VW Group cars - from the DSG gearbox in the Volkswagen Golf to the PDK in Porsche.

There are also automatic manual transmissions, these are not as mainstream as they once were, but are still used in less expensive cars such as the Skoda Citigo. They act like a regular manual, but automatically select speeds and operate the clutch with a computer instead of a footswitch.

The downside is that they can be a bit jerky - like a manual, there's a small pause while the system searches for the next gear. There are many different types of automatic transmissions, so know which one you have so you don't damage it.