SMOOTH OPERATOR: Kia says its new 8-speed automatic gearbox is a very fuel efficient unit. Image: MotorPress
Seoul - Kia has revealed details of its new eight-speed automatic transmission (8AT), engineered for use in front-wheel drive vehicles.
Kia’s new front-wheel drive eight-speed automatic transmission has been developed in-house by the Korean manufacturer and occupies the same space as a conventional six-speed auto transmission but weighs 3.5kg less.
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To improve the eight-speed automatic transmission’s fuel economy, Kia says its engineers significantly reduced the size of the oil pump (the main source of power loss in an automatic transmission) and simplified the structure of the valve body, the automaker says.
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Boasting the smallest oil pump of any production transmission in its class, the 8AT is able to use hydraulic oil more efficiently, distributing it evenly throughout the unit at all times.
Incorporating an additional clutch and gear over Kia’s existing 6AT, the ratio between the top gear and the lowest gear in the new transmission has been increased by 34% over the 6AT.
Kia’s new transmission will make its global debut in the 2017 Kia Cadenza and will also be applied to a number of mid-sized and larger front-wheel drive models.