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One of the world’s largest vehicle driveline and chassis component suppliers, ZF Friedrichshafen AG, most often referred to as just ZF, has shown the world an all-new eight-speed automatic transmission to rival the new eight-speed systems from Toyota (Lexus LS460).

Currently cars like the Ford Falcon are driven via the ZF six-speed auto gearbox, other manufacturers which use ZF gearboxes include BMW, Audi, Jaguar, Land Rover and Volvo. ZF claims the new eight-speed gearbox will be up to 6% more fuel economical than the current six-speed systems and up to 14% more fuel economical than five-speed autos.

It appears that the game of “more gears is better” is in full stretch, to those in the motor industry the eight-speed automatic gearbox has long been the holy grail of all marketing tools, currently Holden still offers the dinasour fours-speed auto in its base model omega.

Our main development target was to find a transmission concept which allows for significant additional fuel consumption reduction and thus offers tangible added value to our customers and drivers without making any compromises in terms of performance,” said ZF’s executive vice-president, technology and group executive of the car driveline technology division, Dr Michael Paul.

Currently cars like the Ford Falcon are driven via the ZF six-speed auto gearbox, other manufacturers which use ZF gearboxes include BMW, Audi, Jaguar, Land Rover and Volvo. ZF claims the new eight-speed gearbox will be up to 6% more fuel economical than the current six-speed systems.

ZF EightSpeed

It appears that the game of “more gears is better” is in full stretch, to those in the motor industry the eight-speed automatic gearbox has long been the holy grail of all marketing tools, currently Holden still offers the dinasour fours-speed auto in its base model omega.

Our main development target was to find a transmission concept which allows for significant additional fuel consumption reduction and thus offers tangible added value to our customers and drivers without making any compromises in terms of performance,” said ZF’s executive vice-president, technology and group executive of the car driveline technology division, Dr Michael Paul.

Will the new Ford Falcon come with an eight-speed auto? Unlikely, the new ZF8 will be in testing for sometime before it will find itself in the humble falcon. However, an eight-speed auto falcon (and territory) is now more likely than ever!

ZF has built the new gearbox for all applications, including rear-wheel drive, front-wheel drive, all-wheel drive and hybrid powertrains.

Cars that might be driven via the new eight-speed gearbox include :

  • Australia’s own Fords Falcon and Territory.
  • BMW’s 1,3,5,7,8, X3/5, Z Series.
  • Jaguar’s S-Type, XJ and XK.
  • Land Rover’s Range Rover Vogue and Sport.
  • Audi’s A4, A5, A6, A8 and Q5/Q7.
  • Volvo’s S80, XC90.

The future of manual transmissions in your everyday family car has taken yet another blow.




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