Fiat's twin-clutch 'box will launch in 2009; to be offered on small, sporty models
29 January 2008

Audi Romeo could soon have a dual-clutch transmission to rival Audi's DSG gearboxes, after the Fiat Group announced that it is working on a similar system.The new unit, called Dual Dry Clutch, has been developed by Fiat Powertrain Technologies. It's first in a series of new transmissions that will be rolled out over the next few years; a six-speed manual comes in 2009, before an automated manual in 2010.Fiat believes the unit can be used in B, C and D segments, which means it could feature on Alfa's forthcoming premium hatchback, the 'Junior', as well as Fiat and Lancia models. Like DSG, however, Dual Dry Clutch is limited by torque; it can't cope with more than 258lb ft, ruling out most diesels and all but the weediest V6, so further development might be required before it ends up on the sportier Alfa saloons.The market is set to be flooded with dual-clutch systems in the next 18 months. BMW is releasing its M DCT system on all M3 models initially, while Volvo's Getrag-developed Powershift is soon to feature on diesel C30, S40 and V50, and is also being lined up for future Land Rovers.

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