PowerShift employs twin internal clutches, one that supports the uneven gears, one, three and five; while the other clutch controls the even gears, two, four and six. Fiesta’s PowerShift automatic with six speeds is unique among small cars, as competitive offerings feature only four- and five-speed automatic transmissions.
“The dual-clutch automatic is a game-changing transmission for Ford,” said Piero Aversa, team leader for PowerShift development. “We believe this new automatic transmission for the Fiesta will be the most advanced in the segment, offering increased responsiveness and performance – all while helping keep the engine in its peak efficiency mode – resulting in class-leading fuel economy.”
The dual-clutch gearbox comes as an alternative to the five-speed manual gearbox which is available with the 1.6-liter Ti-VCT four-cylinder petrol engine (88kW/152Nm).
“PowerShift is the best of both worlds,” said Aversa. “It offers convenience, comfort and accessibility to a broader range of drivers like a conventional automatic, while delivering the mechanical efficiency – both fuel economy and responsive performance – of a manual transmission. Six forward gears enables PowerShift to optimize for fuel efficiency or performance based on driver input. It’s innovation by internal simplification, coupled with smart controls.”
The new dual-clutch automatic transmission is produced by GETRAG Americas at a new facility in Irapuato, Mexico. This is the same plant that will supply PowerShift units for the new Focus. Ford has also revealed it is planning to make the six-speed transmissions available across 85 percent of its product portfolio for 2010, while by 2013 to have them offered in 100 percent of Ford vehicles.