Land Rover’s new ZF nine-speed automatic transmission for transverse applications will be premiered at the Geneva motor show.
Land Rover argues that increasing the number of gear ratios to nine will help reduce emissions and improve efficiency, while lower gear ratios will enhance all-terrain and all-weather capability.
The world’s first nine-speed automatic transmission for a passenger car has a few advantages: smaller ratio steps give improved response during acceleration, with improved shift quality and refinement. Plus, a higher top gear improves efficiency by lowering engine speed, which also improves comfort and reduces noise when cruising at highway speeds.
According to the press release, the ZF 9HP transmission also “complements the all-terrain capability expected of a Land Rover vehicle while delivering exceptionally high levels of refinement and efficiency.” The lowest ratio in the 9HP is lower than the existing six-speed transmission and is designed for off-road use, towing, and on-road conditions like steep gradients.
Despite the extra three gear ratios, the 9HP is only 6mm longer and weighs 7.5kg less than the outgoing six-speed transmission. The compact packaging is achieved by using a new compact hydraulic vane-type pump, two patented dog clutches replacing bulkier conventional clutch packs, and a nested gear set. ZF’s 9HP transmission will debut on the Range Rover Evoque.