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Honda's new continuously variable transmission is coming to mid-sized cars

Honda has long championed the continuously variable transmission (CVT) and while this has in the past been largely a technology suited to small cars and even scooters, the Japanese car giant is now thinking bigger.  Read More

Muscle cars may have been built on manual transmission technology, but automatics have cau...

The 2012 Chevy Camaro ZL1 - the most powerful production Camaro ever - will make use of the latest iteration of TapShift technology. This automated transmission option allows drivers to move through gears using paddle shifters. The updated 2012 TapShift system creates faster shifts, that make the automatic Camaro quicker to 60 mph ( 96.5 km/h) than the manual version. While the transmission choice for a muscle car as fast and powerful as the ZL1 would traditionally have been obvious in the past (manual all the way), GM's updated TapShift technology makes a strong case for the automatic.  Read More

Oerlikon Graziano has come up with an innovative a range of transmissions, including a mec...

In a move that should see the humble agricultural equipment of the future both cleaner and more efficient, Oerlikon Graziano - a supplier to the likes of Ferrari and Lamborghini - has come up with an innovative a range of transmissions, including a mechanical continuously variable transmission (CVT) for small tractors. Released at Agritechnica in Germany last month, these new drive-trains are claimed to provide higher road speeds and be easier to operate so that the equipment can get to its work site much quicker without the need for a float or trailer.  Read More

Toyota's GT 86

Toyota will be officially showing its GT 86 sports car in Tokyo, after several years of concept cars and redesigns and extensive collaboration with Subaru, which will sell an almost identical car. The compact 2+2 sports car is an incredibly important release from the world's largest auto manufacturer, which is hoping to bolster its reputation by creating a superb handling, driver-focused, low center of gravity, beautifully balanced with excellent power-to-weight ratio. The front-mounted 197bhp Subaru 2.0-litre flat-four has rear wheel drive, goes on sale mid-2012 and is expected to sell below GBP30,000 in the UK to "those for whom driving is a passion, not a necessity."  Read More

Honda announces next generation motorcycle engines with outstanding fuel economy and useab...

In a raft of announcements, Honda has developed a highly fuel-efficient, very torquey 700cc twin cylinder engine with a second-generation Dual Clutch Transmission which it will show in three different motorcycle designs at the EICMA 2011 International Motorcycle Exhibition in November in Milan, Italy. The motor will also be paired with a manual six-speed transmission in at least one of those bikes and as it delivers better than 3.7 l/100km and its motor is designed for on-road usability, it is almost certainly the first bike designed for western markets to take advantage of the world's coming gas crisis. Also on display will be Honda's new 125 engine which will be used in its 125cc scooters around the world starting next year and contains an idle-stop system and delivers 25% better fuel economy than current generation scooter engines. Both the 700cc and 125cc engines contain considerable technological wizardry to achieve their goals.  Read More

The NuVinci Harmony continuously variable planetary e-bike transmission automatically main...

Fallbrook Technologies released the NuVinci Continuously Variable (CVP) N170 transmission for bicycles in 2007. The rear hub-based system does away with distinct, defined gears, it’s sealed against dirt and other contaminants (unlike a derailleur), and it allows riders to change drive transmission ratios even when standing still. Last year, the company unveiled the NuVinci N360, which is smaller and lighter than the N170, yet has a wider range of ratios. This Tuesday, Fallbrook announced yet another incarnation of the technology – the NuVinci Harmony, which is an auto-shifting version of the N360.  Read More

Armchair quantum wire could be used to create cables that can transmit electricity over lo...

The United States’ copper-based electric grid is estimated to leak electricity at an estimated five percent per 100 miles (161 km) of transmission. With power plants usually located far from where the electricity they produce will actually be consumed, this can add up to a lot of wasted power. A weave of metallic nanotubes known as armchair quantum wire (AQW) is seen as an ideal solution as it can carry electricity over long distances with negligible loss, but manufacturing the massive amounts of metallic single walled carbon nanotubes required for the development of this “miracle cable” has proven difficult. Now researchers have made a pivotal breakthrough that could make the development of such a cable possible.  Read More

Xtrac IGS is applicable to a two speed EV transmission

After two years secret development in motorsport competition, Xtrac unveiled an important new driveline technology this week in the form of an Instantaneous Gearchange System (IGS). It does exactly the same thing a dual clutch transmission achieves with less weight, cost, and complexity. The secret to Xtrac IGS is the integration of a ratchet and pawl mechanism between each gear hub and the main shaft so that two consecutive gear ratios can be selected and engaged simultaneously, but with only one set of gears driving.  Read More

The MAGDRIVE project is tasked with developing a touchless transmission

Satellites and other spacecraft, like most machines, have parts that move against one another. Unlike most machines, however, they operate in extremely cold conditions, their power source is often very limited, and lubricating or repairing them are not exactly easy tasks. It is for these reasons that researchers at Spain’s Universidad Carlos III de Madrid (UC3M) are coordinating the three-year MAGDRIVE project – an international effort to create a mechanical transmission with no touching parts, that doesn’t need any lubrication.  Read More

The NuVinci N360 Continuously Variable Planetary (CVP)  transmission for bicycles

Three years ago, Fallbrook Technologies introduced its NuVinci Continuously Variable Planetary (CVP) N170 transmission for bicycles. The device created something of a stir in the cycling community, as it replaces traditional derailleurs with a rear hub containing metal spheres, plus it also replaces distinct gears with a continuously variable system of transmitting mechanical power – kind of like comparing a three-setting desk lamp to one with a dimmer switch. Riders can change gears even when not pedaling, they don’t need to worry about improper chainring/cog combinations, and the fiddly bits aren’t out in the open where the dirt can get at them. The N170 is heavier than a conventional derailleur system, which is why you don’t see it much on bikes other than cruisers. That could change, however, with this Wednesday’s announcement of the NuVinci N360 transmission. Fallbrook claims it has all the good points of the N170, but is 30 percent lighter and 17 percent smaller.  Read More

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