Transmissions: Basic Types And Current Options

A transmission is a vital component of any car. As anyone who drives a vehicle can tell you, if it refuses to work, you are not going anywhere. While all transmissions perform the same function – providing power to motivate the vehicle, not all transmissions are identical. In fact, while originally there were was only one type of transmission, there are now several.

Main Types of Transmissions

The original type of transmission was the manual. Also known as a standard, stick, shift stick and straight drive, the manual was the first type of transmission put into motor vehicles to achieve motion. Its distinguishing feature has always been the need of the driver to shift gears by hand and pop the clutch and manipulate the brakes and gas to obtain a smooth drive. People who learned on a standard proudly proclaimed they could drive anything.

Car and truck companies mass-produced their version of a manual transmission. It quickly became the standard for all models of vehicles from the late 1800s until the 1950s. Yet technology does not stand still. Its primacy was challenged, and then overtaken, by a more technologically advanced version of motive power – the automatic transmission.

The automatic arrived on the scene in the 1930s. An automatic transmission immediately pops into the correct gear without the driver getting involved. The only exceptions are reverse and the initial start-up. Yet, the automatic transmission did not become the most popular kid on the block over night. In fact, it was not until after the First World War and moving well into the 1950s that companies began to produce automatics with consistency.

Today, according to many pundits, the manual transmission is on its way out. This is particularly true in North America where the Automatic transmission reigns. It is not completely applicable to Europe. Manual transmissions are also still popular among racing aficionados.

Options and Variations on the Basics

* While the standard and automatic transmissions are the most common types found in vehicles today, other types do exist. Some are variations on the basics. Others are ventures into new technology. Among them are:

* The Semi-Automatic – this is a periodic favorite. It has been around for over a century. It currently is finding favor under a new guise

* The Manumatic – an automatic an added manual-shift mode usually floor mounted

* The Continuous Variable – praised for better fuel efficiency

* TipTronic® gearbox

* Direct shift gearbox (DSG) – otherwise known as the dual clutch transmission (DCT) it was developed for Formula One racing

The latest and most effective in transmission design are those that look back to the contributions made by the automatic and standard transmissions. They combine the nest of this previous technology to create more energy and fuel-efficient methods to channel the horsepower of the engine to the wheels.

No matter what type of Transmission your vehicle has, you can count on Trans Works Transmissions to help you get the most out of it. We can rebuild, repair and lend a hand in finding the right transmission solution for your model. Contact us at Trans Works Transmissions for details and estimates.

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