The Range Rover Evoque will be the first regular production car to be fitted with a nine-speed automatic gearbox.
Unveiled at the Geneva motor show, the new ZF-supplied 9HP transmission initially will replace the existing six-speed unit across all-wheel-drive versions of the Evoque, with “significant improvements in fuel economy and a corresponding reduction in CO2 emissions” promised.
The closer ratios are said to improve shift quality, refinement and acceleration response, and reduce noise at higher cruising speeds.
The top ratio in the torque converter gearbox is particularly tall to improve fuel economy, while the bottom ratio is much lower than that in the current six-speed unit to improve the Evoque’s off-road ability.
A ‘skip-shift’ function is also included, so gears can be skipped under rapid deceleration or firmer throttle use. The gearbox can also recognise driving styles and detect when more urgent shifts are required or when a relaxed shifting style is desired.