The ZF CEO, Stefan Sommer, thinks that the battle for a lot of speeds found in transmissions is close to being over because the number is expected to stop at nine.
According to the ZF official, there is no need for more than 9 speeds in regular production cars because getting passed this number will only mean extra weight which couldn’t be justified with lowered fuel consumption. Basically, what Stefan Sommer is trying to say is that regular production cars might become similar to trucks if more than 9-speeds will be offered on automatic transmissions.
ZF has already signed a contract with the Chrysler Group and ZF will provide eight- and nine-speed automatic transmissions on its models and this is translated into a fresh breath of air of the German company in a rough economic situation on the Old Continent. The statement of Stefan Sommer is coming as a contradiction to the announcement made by Hyundai Motor Group, which is planning to develop a new 10-speed automatic transmission in-house, but details on this subject are limited for the moment. One thing is for sure, next time you want a new car, search one with a ZF transmission which stops at “just” 9 speeds.
Source: Automotive News Europe