It seems like there is prevailing a “gear war” between manufacturers of premium cars. What with these carmakers adding more and more gears to their automatic transmissions?
Mercedes Benz recently launched its first 9G-Tronic gearbox on the the E 350 BlueTEC model. This is carmaker’s first 9 speed automatic gearbox with a torque converter. The new transmission endows the car’s six-cylinder diesel engine to have an impressive fuel economy figure of 5.3 liters/100 km (for sedan) and 5.5 litres/100 km (for station wagon).The gearbox also results into lower CO2 emissions of 138 g/km (for the sedan) and 144 g/km (for the station wagon).
The new Mercedes E 350 BlueTEC is powered by a 252PS 3.0-liter V6 diesel engine that will now come mated to the new nine-speed gearbox (as standard).
Mercedes Benz claims that more gears, along with broader gear ratio spread, help increasing the drive comfort and “enable a significant enhancement to be achieved in terms of converting engine power into traction.”
Mercedes also claims that the new gearbox is lighter than the 7G-Tronic unit it replaces. The new gearbox has a maximum transferable torque of up to 1,000 Nmand the 9G-Tronic is also capable of skipping “several gears” when needed. The gearbox is apt for usage in both RWD and AWD formats and might also find its way to some plug-in hybrids.
Deliveries of the 9G Tronic equipped E 350 BlueTEC in Germany will commence in September 2013, with the car having a starting price of €54,710 (for sedan) and €57,923 (for estate).