Currently reading: Honda patents 11-speed triple-clutch automatic gearbox
Honda has registered a patent for a new 11-speed triple-clutch automatic gearbox; Japanese manufacturer currently uses CVT 'boxes in some cars

Honda has filed a patent for a transmission system with 11 gears and three clutches.

The transmission has been designed to improve efficiency while decreasing the loss of torque when changing gear (something that can often occur in dual-clutch systems), as well as reducing shift times and allowing for gears to be skipped.

The manufacturer currently uses single-speed continuously variable transmissions (CVT) in its smaller cars. These gearboxes are renowned for being more fragile, so are better suited for smaller cars where simplicity and ease of use is key. Seeing as the new gearbox has been designed to increase efficiency, it could warrant usage on any number of models.

A source at Honda told Autocar: “Honda has patented a new triple-clutch, 11-speed transmission system, however, we’re unable to confirm the plans of its use.

“We have both the new Honda Civic and new Honda CR-V coming soon, but as it’s only just been patented, it’s very unlikely it’ll be on any batch of cars for a while.” 

Despite a patent being filed, it’s unclear as to whether it will even make production. If  Honda puts the new system into production and it’s a success, expect to see other manufacturers following suit.

Honda also confirmed there were currently no plans for the gearbox to come to the UK.

Currently, the 10-speed automatic transmission from Ford Motor Company and General Motors holds the record for the gearbox with the most gears. This transmission makes its debut in the Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 and Ford F-150 – both due in 2017.

Ford is reportedly said to also be working on an 11-speed gearbox.

Danni Bagnall

Join the debate

Add a comment…
jmd67 26 August 2016

A nice simple gearbox then.

Nothing to go wrong here... Another car that will be scrapped at 6 or 7 years old as the gearbox will cost as much to replace as the car's worth. When will this nonsense stop?
Symanski 26 August 2016


I'm sure one of the advantages of a CVT is cost. A standard auto is normally a cost extra, dual clutch a bigger cost. So would I seriously believe that an 11 speed triple clutch would be going to smaller cars? Erm, no.
LP in Brighton 26 August 2016

11 speeds is just absurd

I accept that its mechanical efficiency may be better than a conventional auto or CVT, but at what price in weight and complexity. Personally I like the Toyota's e-CVT planetary gear arrangement which should be mechanically efficient, but which might not be applicable to non hybrids. Would it not be better to spend the effort on making an ic engine work over a slightly wider rev range, or just ditch it altogether in favour of an electric motor?