Currently reading: Kia reveals innovative new mild-hybrid manual transmission
Korean firm says new system will boost fuel economy, reduce emissions and ensure driver engagement
James Attwood, digital editor
News
2 mins read
24 June 2020

Kia has revealed a new manual gearbox, using an electronic rather than mechanical linkage, for its forthcoming mild-hybrid models, which the firm claims offers improved fuel economy and greater driver engagement.

The new Intelligent Manual Transmission (IMT) system will be introduced on the 1.6-litre 48V mild-hybrid diesel powertrain for the Ceed and Xceed, and will also be used on the 1.0-litre mild-hybrid petrol version of the forthcoming refreshed Rio. It will then be introduced to other 48V electrified powertrains in the future.

The system replaces the traditional mechanical linkage for the clutch with an electronic wired connection, with the system then integrated into the 48V MHEV powertrain system. It works with the mild-hybrid’s starter-generator to switch off the engine when coasting – while keeping the chosen gear engaged – which Kia claims boosts fuel efficiency and reduces CO2 emissions by up to 3% in real-world conditions.

The IMT system has been developed at the Hyundai Motor Group’s European technical centre in Germany, with a specific focus on the European market due to the continued popularity of manual gearboxes. Michael Winkler, Kia’s powertrain boss, said that manuals still accounted for more than half of the Korean firm’s sales in Europe.

“Manual gearboxes are a real driver for Europe, so we wanted to look at how to electrify a manual transmission,” said Winkler. “When we look at the global picture we still see real demand for manual gearboxes, and we saw a real benefit to being able to offer a manual transmission on a 48V electrified system.

“While the system does boost real-world economy, it’s not all about efficiency but comfort for drivers: the 48V system offers a smoother stop-start system, for example. The benefit for customers is they don’t have to do anything different: the system does it automatically.”

READ MORE

Kia Rio supermini gains mild-hybrid powertrain

Kia Ceed Sportswagon and Xceed plug-in hybrids details

Kia UK boss: Nearly a third of sales will be electrified vehicles

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Comments
27

24 June 2020

Starts off with an electric gearbox half way though says it's an electric clutch. Does it still have a gearstick, how much more than a normal less complicated manual etc. 

24 June 2020
xxxx wrote:

Starts off with an electric gearbox half way though says it's an electric clutch. Does it still have a gearstick, how much more than a normal less complicated manual etc. 

Just read the article and all your questions will be answered.

24 June 2020
typos1 wrote:

xxxx wrote:

Starts off with an electric gearbox half way though says it's an electric clutch. Does it still have a gearstick, how much more than a normal less complicated manual etc. 

Just read the article and all your questions will be answered.

I did first time. Have you ever had an original thought in your life?

25 June 2020
xxxx wrote:

typos1 wrote:

xxxx wrote:

Starts off with an electric gearbox half way though says it's an electric clutch. Does it still have a gearstick, how much more than a normal less complicated manual etc. 

Just read the article and all your questions will be answered.

I did first time. Have you ever had an original thought in your life?

Lol, okI ll rephrase that - read the origainl article PROPERLY and al your quesions will be answered.

Whetehr I ve had an original thoguht or not isnt relevant to anything here.

24 June 2020
Well done Kia for recognising that some of us want to retain a manual gearbox in future. The electronic clutch idea is interesting and potentially opens up further opportunities for integrating more powerful electric motors.

Now please fit it to an interesting engine / car.

24 June 2020

The diagram shows what looks like a manual drive-by-wire clutch pedal alongside the right hand brake pedal. So it means that the car can be driven like a normal manual gearbox car, unlike say a DSG two-pedal car. It suggests that the automaatic arrangement is there to facilitate engine off coasting with the car still in gear while allowing quick start up and energy recovery when the brakes are applied. This appeals to me (as someone who frequently coasts downhill when engine braking is not needed), but I'm sure that not everyone will like it! 

A three percent gain may not sound very much, but it is still worth having for the price of a little electronic trickery. Most modern automatics free-wheel under some circumstances, so why not allow manuals to do the same?  

24 June 2020
LP in Brighton wrote:

The diagram shows what looks like a manual drive-by-wire clutch pedal alongside the right hand brake pedal. So it means that the car can be driven like a normal manual gearbox car, unlike say a DSG two-pedal car. It suggests that the automaatic arrangement is there to facilitate engine off coasting with the car still in gear while allowing quick start up and energy recovery when the brakes are applied. This appeals to me (as someone who frequently coasts downhill when engine braking is not needed), but I'm sure that not everyone will like it! 

A three percent gain may not sound very much, but it is still worth having for the price of a little electronic trickery. Most modern automatics free-wheel under some circumstances, so why not allow manuals to do the same?  

Love the idea of it as well. And I also coast, though not just downhill - anytime I can without slowing down anyone behind, its surprising how much fuel you can save. And I m talking at the speed limit, not stupidly slow speeds. Often you can judge it so the car slows to very low speeds at a junction, so you just dab the brakes lightly to stop, also saving brake pads. Obviously you cover the brake whilst coasting and usually the clutch is dipped so it can be brought up for engine braking if needed.

 

In most modern (the last 20 years) cars the engine management will let the engine "coast" when going downhill.

24 June 2020

I was always taught that the engine is for accelerating, the brakes are for slowing. And it's just a waste of energy to have the engine rotating and wasting energy when you don't actually need to slow down. 

24 June 2020
LP in Brighton wrote:

I was always taught that the engine is for accelerating, the brakes are for slowing. And it's just a waste of energy to have the engine rotating and wasting energy when you don't actually need to slow down. 

That the muppethead didn't tell you to read it again when you title a post about article raising more questions than it answered. But then when is Typos1 ever logically 

24 June 2020
xxxx wrote:

LP in Brighton wrote:

I was always taught that the engine is for accelerating, the brakes are for slowing. And it's just a waste of energy to have the engine rotating and wasting energy when you don't actually need to slow down. 

That the muppethead didn't tell you to read it again when you title a post about article raising more questions than it answered. But then when is Typos1 ever logically 

Thanks for your contribution. I ve re read both the article and your post and the article does answer your all questions, read stuff properly before posting. Oh and maybe get some English lessons so your posts atually make some sense ?

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