2014 Audi A4 Performance Review

Audi has stopped the development of the continuously variable automatic transmission (CVT) for its range of models, and it’s scheduled to be replaced by the next generation 7-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission. Known as the Multitronic transmission in Audi-speak, the Ingolstadt based company was one of the first automakers to offer a CVT box on its vehicles back in 1999, and is currently available on the base variants of the A4, A5, A6 and A7 models in the Audi range.

An engineer from Audi confirmed the development stating that the 7-speed DSG also known as the S Tronic, is better than the CVT box and is the future. The new 7-speed dual-clutch transmission is believed to be an evolved version of the existing 7-speed DSG automatic gearbox already offered on a range of Volkswagen Group vehicles. Even though the CVT box was good for fuel economy, the transmission unit has come to an end of its lifecycle after serving its purpose for over a decade now.

The major problem with CVT boxes has been the constant high revs from the engine, which does little or nothing to aid the movement of the vehicle at all times. Most manufacturers adopted the CVT box as it was an economical automatic transmission to equip vehicles with and also offered acceptable fuel economy, but wasn’t quick enough and took away the joy of driving. However, the new age dual-clutch S Tronic transmissions have been developed well enough to offer much better fuel economy than the CVT boxes, without having to comprise on performance.

Apart from the old technology, the CVT also attracted a very expensive lawsuit for Audi over the alleged defects in the CVT box in the US. The lawsuit covered over 64,000 vehicles and had was settled with the German automaker agreeing to reimburse owners that were affected by the faulty CVT equipped vehicles. The 7-speed DSG automatic on the other hand is a tried and tested unit that will launch on the next generation Audi A4 in the second half of 2015 and will be adopted on all vehicles subsequently.

Audi Multitronic CVT Gearbox