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Kia long term test

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The DDCT & CVT transaxles didn't do well over here. The rest of the world seem to have embraced them.
They do look good on paper & in theory. They need more R&D.
The CVT in the Caliber was OK once I got used to the 'slip n' slide' feel. The ratio spread in the 8 & 9 speeds make them so much more pleasant to drive.
Nissan did a much better job on CVT software than we did. All the CVT 'Auto-stick' did was to shift in steps like a 6-speed.
The DDCT in the Dart was recalled a couple of times and then discontinued as an option. This was needlessly painful for the Dart.

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2002 Ram 2500 Quad Cab 4x4 with Cummins. 2021 Jeep Grand Cherokee L Altitude
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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I thought the article was interesting in at least two ways. One, the lack of courtesy given to C&D by the dealer and two, how they jacked them around on a replacement and the time it took to get repaired. If that was a Mopar, god it'd be a 6pm news story.
 

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The issue with most DCT is they're "dry" (ford focus and dodge dart) which means they need to be driven just like a manual would be or you're gonna put up the clutch packs. Wet ones are much better as they allow slipping without burning up the packs. The issue i'm guessing with Kia is it's their first wet DCT since they're not easy to design/make. It took vw group years to perfect theirs.
 

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After having a POS DCT in my 2014 Ford Focus that was engineered so badly it couldn't be fixed or get parts for, no way would I get any vehicle with a DCT or CVT.
As, @mopar22 says, the problem with the PowerShift dual clutch in the Ford Focus is it is a dry dual dual clutch transmission.

Except for exotics (maybe), NO ONE does automated dry dual clutch transmissions. NO ONE. They are all wet dual clutch.

Ford would have been better off increasing the production capacity of their existing "slushbox" 6-speed automatic. But hindsight is 20/20.
 

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At least you can smell when a dry clutch is dragging. ;)
 

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It’s one more example of the true cost of pursuing the last %age of efficiency.
We’ve had Subarus for years (since 1998) and the ‘98 with the old school Subaru 4 speed with 186,000 on it when we traded it not a lick of trouble. Just changed fluid every 50k miles. The newer one (17 Forester) with CVT? Not hearing good things about these. Subaru had to extend the warrantee to 100,000 miles. They cost $7500 to replace. Not repairable in the shop? Is that progress?
 

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It’s one more example of the true cost of pursuing the last %age of efficiency.
We’ve had Subarus for years (since 1998) and the ‘98 with the old school Subaru 4 speed with 186,000 on it when we traded it not a lick of trouble. Just changed fluid every 50k miles. The newer one (17 Forester) with CVT? Not hearing good things about these. Subaru had to extend the warrantee to 100,000 miles. They cost $7500 to replace. Not repairable in the shop? Is that progress?
All CVT transmissions need extremely frequent fluid changes - it's one of the reason why Nissans have a reputation for crappy transmissions... as in 3x the fluid change frequency of a traditional automatic.

People are are not accustomed to performing transmission services. A traditional "slushbox" automatic transmission (regardless of whether it's electronically controlled) will frequently last 100,000-200,000 miles without a service, and last a lot longer than that if you perform a fluid+filter service every 80k miles or thereabouts.

They (any manufacturer using a CVT) are gaining a few % points in efficiency at the sacrifice of greater maintenance costs.
 

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JATCO makes most of the world's CVTs. There is no scheduled maintenance interval for fluid & filter changes. No adjustments.

I changed my fluid & filters at 32K miles for peace of mind. There are 2 filters. The CVTF+4 is a green fluid. Mine had darkened to an olive green, but showed no nefarious wear.
Because of Chrysler's supply contract with JATCO, we weren't permitted to rebuild these. It was replaced by assembly only.
It is a remarkably simple transaxle with far less parts than a conventional transaxle.
Ford couldn't get the CVT right either & except for the Escape Hybrid, ended the CVT in 2006.
 
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The issue I see with a dual clutch transmission is guaranteeing that the non-engaged disc is truly centered and not touching either side. There is a lot of potential heat and wear at that point.
 

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With the Subaru CVT, what I felt Vs the old 4 speed auto is that the vehicle with about the same size engine & hp performed significantly better than the old 4 speed auto. Both vehicles were about the same size & weight and had 2.5 liter engines with about the same hp. Fuel economy was about the same.
 

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When they actually move a car rather than smoke the clutches a DDCT transmission has a performance and economy advantage over a traditional automatic.
When they smoke the clutches and the car no longer moves, all advantages are lost.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
I don't remember exactly where I read it, but automatics today are so close to manuals in efficiency that mileage difference between the two is nil. Reminds me of the old days when running the A/C was a mileage killer.
 

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Automatics are usually better than manuals now, because they have a much wider range. Part of that is a self-inflicted wound by manual transmission makers; I’ve noticed current manuals tend to have narrower gearing than in the past. I'd just as soon have a sixth gear that means something—something you would not dare use below 55 mph! (Like the non-ACR Neon’s original top gear, which CR dinged for being too high, but which provided that 38 mpg highway estimate.)

The Mazda 3 and Hyundai/Kia equivalent (Kona and... Elantra GT?) both suffer from that and their highway mileage from four-cylinder true compacts is pretty low as a result. Meanwhile my wife's V6 routinely returns 34 mpg at 75 mph thanks to the wide ratio eight speed.
 
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