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GM considers CVTs for small cars


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GM considers CVTs for small cars

The Chevy Cruze is one of the small cars that may get a continuously variable transmission.

Hans Greimel

Automotive News -- November 29, 2010 - 12:01 am ET

INCHEON, South Korea -- General Motors Co., aiming to give its small cars a sales edge, may introduce continuously variable transmissions to deliver better fuel economy, executives say.

GM doesn't use CVTs now. But they could be used on models such as the Chevrolet Spark, Aveo and Cruze in the next three years, said Mike Arcamone, CEO of GM Daewoo Auto & Technology.

The company is also exploring the use of turbochargers on smaller engines.

Getting superior mileage is key to winning over U.S. drivers to the latest wave of small cars that began with the launch of the Cruze this year and continues with the arrival of the four-seat Spark in the first half of 2012.

GM will have to improve the mileage on these models by at least 10 percent by the next full-model change, said Sohn Dongyoun, vice president of engineering at GM's global small- and minicar development team at GM Daewoo. CVTs offer an easy , quick fix, he said.

General Motors offered CVTs in three vehicles, the Saturn Ion coupe and Vue SUV and the Opel Astra small car, for three years but dropped the transmission at the end of the 2005 model year.

Arcamone said U.S. customers are finally ready for small cars such as the Spark -- as long as they wield eye-catching style and updated content, especially infotainment options.

"The car's got to not look like a small box," Arcamone said. "It's got to be fun, sporty, aggressive and have roominess." Despite the Spark's small size, "You don't feel claustrophobic."

The Spark, to be GM's smallest U.S. offering, will test whether the recovering automaker has found the right formula. The car will be manufactured in North America, but Arcamone declined to identify the plant. Production in Mexico is one option.

Read more: http://www.autonews.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20101129/OEM06/311299998/1436#ixzz16h6mG8k6

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all the recent CVT's i have driven are excellent. On the freeway at high mph, the rpms get really low, hence the mpg.

on the outback, the rpm is about 500 or more lower at 70 mph than the manual.

on the Kizashi I drove, the CVT is like a slingshot when it responds at the right speed and rpm. No way you can accelerate roll on that quick with a manual trans.

GM needs to do this on some of its models. Just make it reliable this time!

all the recent CVT's i have driven are excellent. On the freeway at high mph, the rpms get really low, hence the mpg.

on the outback, the rpm is about 500 or more lower at 70 mph than the manual.

on the Kizashi I drove, the CVT is like a slingshot when it responds at the right speed and rpm. No way you can accelerate roll on that quick with a manual trans.

GM needs to do this on some of its models. Just make it reliable this time!

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Report: GM considering CVTs for small cars

by Steven J. Ewing (RSS feed) on Nov 29th 2010 at 2:01PM

05spark3-4front-1280.jpg

General Motors is considering the introduction of continuously variable transmissions in its next round of small cars in an effort to improve fuel efficiency. According to a report from Automotive News, the Chevrolet Cruze is being considered for CVT application, as well as Bowtie's smaller Aveo and Spark compacts.

In speaking with AN, Sohn Dongyoun, GM's vice president of engineering at Daewoo, says that CVTs offer an easy, quick fix in order to help improve fuel mileage. Dongyoun says that GM will need to improve the fuel economy on its small cars by at least 10 percent in their respective next generations.

This will not be GM's first application of CVTs. In the early 2000s, the automaker used CVTs in the Saturn Ion coupe and Vue crossover, as well as the Opel Astra hatchback overseas. This CVT was not well received, however, and was discontinued at the end of the 2005 model year. Currently, no word has been given as to whether or this GM's new CVT would be developed in-house, or when we might see the first applications being offered.

LINK:

http://www.autoblog.com/2010/11/29/report-gm-considering-cvts-for-small-cars/

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A quick search found that it's a Aisin AF33. Same trans in both the Ion and Vue.

The Aisin was a 5-speed auto. used in 4dr. IONs and 3.0L VUEs

The VTi was IIRC called a VT25 and was built by an Opel plant in Hungary. It came in ION coupes and some 2.2L VUEs. As mentioned a total piece of garbage.

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REPORT: GM CONSIDERING CVTS TO BOOST SMALL CAR MPGS

By Mark Kleis

It was just five years ago that General Motors pulled the plug on its attempt to using continuously variable transmissions in its small cars to help boost fuel economy, but new reports suggest the technology may live again at The General.

As automakers continue to receive ever more stringent requirements from the U.S. government regarding lower emissions and higher fleet-wide fuel economy averages, automakers are having to consider every available technology that can help boost miles per gallon. At GM, Autoweek says executives are mulling the idea of reviving the use of CVT transmissions for use on small cars instead of traditional automatic transmissions, despite the technology being canceled after use on three small cars in 2005.

More specifically, the CVT technology would likely be applied to vehicles such as the upcoming Chevrolet Spark, the upcoming all-new Aveo and the recently arrived Cruze, according to the CEO of GM Daewoo auto and technology, Mike Arcamone.

GM has set a target goal of boosting fuel economy by a full 10 percent – or more – by its next full refresh cycle, and the automaker says CVT transmission would be one “quick and easy” fix, according to Sohn Dongyoun, VP of engineering for GM’s joint small- and minicar development with Daewoo.

link:

http://www.leftlanenews.com/report-gm-considering-cvts-to-boost-small-car-mpgs.html

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I do not like the driving feel of a CVT. And when my mom bought her Cube, it was noted that the CVT has a warranty for 10 years/100k miles, to assuage reliability fears. Apparently Nissan had problems with them as well, at least early on.

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I do not like the driving feel of a CVT. And when my mom bought her Cube, it was noted that the CVT has a warranty for 10 years/100k miles, to assuage reliability fears. Apparently Nissan had problems with them as well, at least early on.

They did, but so did other companies like GM and Audi. It was simply a matter of improving the technology; Audi and GM more or less gave up whereas companies Nissan and Honda soldiered on, and have a few years under their belt.

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The Aisin was a 5-speed auto. used in 4dr. IONs and 3.0L VUEs

The VTi was IIRC called a VT25 and was built by an Opel plant in Hungary. It came in ION coupes and some 2.2L VUEs. As mentioned a total piece of garbage.

On second look, you're right, the Aisin is the 5-speed auto. Wikipedia doesn't seem to have info on the specific model, etc of the CVT.

I am not sold on anyone's CVT and consider it the weakest mechanical link in my mother's minibus.

I've got to agree. Conceptually, they're a good idea and worth developing, but I'm not likely to buy one anytime soon, since it's most likely going to be inferior reliability-wise to normal automatic and manual transmissions for a while. I'll take longevity and reliability over a couple mpgs.

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Ford, too, with their crappy CVT in the 500/Montego. I am not sold on anyone's CVT and consider it the weakest mechanical link in my mother's minibus.

the ford CVT was probably the worst one I've sampled. it was why i got my 500 with a 6 speed.

all the cvt's i've driven this past year are 10x better, and are quite good.

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