By on November 12, 2014

Volkswagen TDI

At its 2014 Innovation Workshop, Volkswagen unveiled an assortment of technologies, ranging from doors that open and close automatically, to 10-speed transmissions and more powerful diesels.

On the powertrain front, the aforementioned 10-speed DSG will handle engine power up to 406 lb-ft of torque, while the layout of its gear steps helps further lower CO2 emissions. Meanwhile, the new 239 horsepower twin-turbo diesel unit in the Passat could be pushed to 268 horsepower with electric assist, variable valve trains, and an optimized gas exchange cycle. The mill also burns a gallon of diesel for every 44 miles, while VW’s newest stop-start system cuts power at 4 mph, as well as at higher speeds when the accelerator is released. A mild hybrid system uses energy recovery to further efficiency.

Inside, the driver will be able to make use of either Apple’s CarPlay or Google’s Android Auto thanks to the latest version of MirrorLink and its App Connect software. VW also introduced a prototype navigation system that “takes notes” of where the driver prefers to go without the need to be first called upon. They can also check on their car’s vitals via updates to VW’s Car Net’s Security & Service suite, connecting drivers to the Internet to determine what fluids, if any, need to be topped-up prior to a trip, as one example.

Other technologies on display at this year’s workshop include dashboards and glass sunroofs whose pigments and coatings block infrared radiation; lightweight construction and materials techniques derived from motorsport — specifically the 2014 Polo R WRC; and need-based air-conditioning systems for EVs such as the e-up! and e-Golf.

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25 Comments on “VW Unveils New 10-Speed DSG, Other Technologies From Innovation Workshop...”

  • avatar

    I’m glad to see that VW is getting the tech to do what my five year old Ford has been able to do for some time

  • avatar

    When I grew up, only fancy bicycles has 10 speeds. A car with a five speed manual was considered to be really, really sporty. Automatics had three speeds. I feel very old right now.

  • avatar
    schmitt trigger

    A question for the B&B, as I get confused with all the acronyms:

    What does DSG stand for? It is a transmission, so would it be: Digitally Selected Gears?

    • 0 avatar

      Direct-shift gearbox; Direkt-Schalt-Getriebe in German.

      I really wish the German manufacturers would see the humour in having Doppelkupplungsgetriebe as an option on their vehicles, instead of creating another acronym.

  • avatar

    VW says DSG. BMW’s term is DCT (at least in English), which abbreviates the direct translation of Doppelkupplungsgetriebe. Porsche has its PDK, whatever that stands for.

    Come one, come all! We’ve got plenty of letters left for your own version. Either way they’re all dual-clutch, multi-shaft, automated gearboxes.

  • avatar

    I’m thinking this is too many speeds, especially if it only can go up or down one gear at a time. I was driving my wife’s car on the highway one day and got stuck behind a truck going about 45 mph. When a break in traffic appeared and I stepped on the accelertor, the car downshifted three time before I got any power. Even though it shifts quickly, that was longer than I’d like to wait in that situation. Having to wait for five or six shifts would seem like an eternity.

    You get that many speeds, you might as well go CVT.

    • 0 avatar
      Brian P

      You don’t state which vehicle/transmission you have. There is nothing mechanical that prevents a DSG from changing down multiple ratios at once, although changing down more than to the next gear lower will take longer because it can’t pre-engage it and just do a clutch-swap as it does for a normal one-gear up or down shift. The programming might not allow it, though. I’ve never noticed any issue with this with my dad’s VW DSG.

      It’s more complicated with traditional automatics, certain multi-step shifts can be done at once and others will take longer depending on which clutches it has to manipulate to make it happen.

      By the way, CVTs have trouble with large ratio-changes, too. It takes a certain amount of time for the belt to work itself from one position on the cones to another …

      Jatco’s newest CVTs have a two-speed planetary set in addition to the CVT; if you mash the accelerator to the floor it downshifts the two-speed range box because it can be done faster. But if you are going to use a planetary gearset in addition to the CVT to cover up its faults, you might as well forget the CVT and use a stepped geared transmission!

  • avatar
    Big Al from Oz

    Can the German’s build cars even better??


  • avatar

    Wonder if 10, 12, 20 or 100 speeds, is the point at which such exercises in complexioneering become undifferentiable from a cheap, simple CVT?

    • 0 avatar
      Brian P

      CVT is neither simple nor cheap.

      • 0 avatar

        Then why do auto manufacturers use them?

      • 0 avatar

        Compared to a 10 speed DSG, yes it’s simple, and my guess is that it costs about half what a DSG would

      • 0 avatar

        > CVT is neither simple nor cheap.

        Wrong on both counts.

        • 0 avatar

          Isn’t a CVT literally just some belts and pulleys?

          Even the god damned DAF Daffodil had a CVT, and that car had the styling of a child’s drawing and 36 horsepower.

          • 0 avatar
            Brian P

            Variable-width pulleys each with a hydraulic actuator, and the “belt” is not really a belt but rather a special chain.

            Still has a torque converter with lockup clutch, still has a planetary gearset with a couple of clutches in it, still has an oil pump and a valve body. On the older models, the gearset was just forward and reverse. Then when geared transmissions started getting a bigger ratio spread than could be achieved with the CVT alone, Jatco added a two-speed-plus-reverse range box to it to extend the overall drive ratio.

            It is a “comparable” level of cost and complexity to a normal 6-speed auto-box – but neither one of these is simple, nor cheap.

            They’re also not repairable except possibly by the factory-authorized rebuilder – but neither are most stepped-ratio transmissions nowadays. If (when?) a Nissan CVT blows up, the only fix is to swap in a new one.

            The ZF 8-speed only has 5 clutches inside it …

          • 0 avatar

            CVT’s are getting more complex (the basic idea is simple) but I would still argue they have to be much cheaper and simpler than a DSG. I think the service problem is with manufacturers not supplying the parts rather than complexity. A friend of mine took apart one from a Saturn VUE seemed pretty simple inside compared to the 5 speed auto Ive seen apart. More complex than the 727 in my ramcharger but nothing like the DSG cutaways I’ve seen. I know Chrysler stated there was a large cost saving using the CVT’s on the caliber and patriot so I assumed in general they are cheaper than most conventional autos.

    • 0 avatar

      At that point just give me a diesel electric setup. Diesel makes the electricity and the electric motors move the car. Add a hybrid battery to handle power spikes.

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