Know Everything about Power Shifting and PowerShift Transmissions


Jan 10th, 2019

Know Everything about Power Shifting and PowerShift Transmissions

What is Power Shifting?

Power Shifting is used of shifting in vehicles mostly having a manual which reduces the time in which the driving wheel is not fully powered. In Powershifting, the driver’s feet do not leave the accelerator. While at high speeds, most drivers tend to powershift to cut shifting time and to maintain power band but it has a great effect because it puts a lot of load on the synchronizer rings living in your transmission. To avoid certain cases like this, high-end auto manufacturers have started producing cars with power shifting transmission.

A PowerShift transmission is an auto-manual transmission. It is a six-speed automatic dual-clutch transmission. It is an increasing favorite when the topic of dual clutch transmissions is discussed. Most high-end auto manufacturers are slowly ditching the regular manual transmissions in their vehicles and opting of a more high-end performance transmission to improve the driving experience which is the PowerShift transmission. Powershift transmission is the most wanted for high-end car lovers.

In 2020, it is said that the number of cars fitted with PowerShift transmission will increase across America and Europe because this transmission improves efficiency and smooth shifting when compared to other types of automatic transmissions. It gets the job done easily while shifting. They are said to be the future of automotive transmissions Car manufacturers like Volvo are already adopting the new PowerShift transmission.

A PowerShift transmission consists of wet clutch packs. The individual clutch pack is made up of discs which are placed together using a hydraulic powered piston. They also contain springs which set the piston free when the pressure of the hydraulic is turned off. The power shifting transmission changes to the next gear automatically anticipating the next shift making gear changes quick and delivering smooth power. It is built to be extremely low maintenance, delivering up to 10000miles and is durable for up to 10 years. Power Shift transmission makes use of synchronizers which are the friction devices match the input speed and the selected gear while changing.

The power shift has a very efficient uninterrupted torque from the dual clutch. The Torque consists of twin manual transmissions in parallel. One controls gear 1,3 and 5 while the other one controls the gears 2,4 and 6. Basically, the work like normal automatic transmission without a clutch pedal and can also work like manual transmission using paddle shifters on the steering wheel. Powershift transmission is built to give drivers the best of both worlds while driving.The Powershift is said to be more efficient because it is very durable and it does not have a lot of weight. They do not need a lot of planetary gears to function optimally. It helps to reduce fuel faster while driving.

A PowerShift transmission provides a total of 6 speeds which are the forward gears and the reverse gears. The assemblies at the planetary area are joined by two linkages promoting the moving of power across the various planetary sections. The power shift transmission makes use of two brakes and three clutches which in turn, gives out 6-speed changes.

Advantages of PowerShift Transmission

The major advantages of a PowerShift transmission are mostly the fuel economy, rate of shift and the way it operates. Most vehicles making use of PowerShift transmission are much more efficient in fuel consumption, offering a better and easier driving experience than regular automatic vehicles. Most manufacturers in these modern days always prefer using them. Manufacturers like Porsche, BMW, and Ford, etc.  Instead of regular gearboxes. And most customers, especially the Elites are willing to spend such incredible amounts for money for a seamless driving experience.

Another major advantage is that they allow automatic transmission to function without the presence of a torque converter. They have better engine performance which improved driving dynamics and helps to get rid of power loss in the engine.

They are slowly becoming popular in the United States because drivers are still very used to an automatic transmission.

The PowerShift transmission is very interesting to use and very engaging to drive with. They offer very good performance and excellent overall driving dynamics.

PowerShift transmission doesn't make use of a clutch pedal. Although there are no clutch pedals, the driver can control the vehicle by using paddle shifters. They are very easy to maneuver in traffic situations and case there is a need to shift to the manual transmission, paddle shifters provide quick access to the power band.

Disadvantages of PowerShift Transmission

They are very expensive to buy and to maintain. Any vehicle having the option of PowerShift transmission is usually expensive costing thousands of dollars and lacks the audacity to fill in the space in which the manual transmission they aim to displace has done.

Most conventional drivers aren’t comfortable with the nature of the driving experience of PowerShift transmission vehicles because they are mostly used to driving regular automatic transmission.

Most manufacturers have hesitated greatly in implementing PowerShift transmission because it will increase the cost in the production of these vehicles, it will now increase the selling price. Implementing this shift transmission will lead to spending more money on cost and sales.

There seems of exist turbo lag when a PowerShift transmission is put into the turbo, and the vehicle seems to jerk a lot while in lower gears. This right here is the major reason why power shift transmission is generally used by high-performance vehicles.

Difference Between PowerShift Transmission vs Regular Automatic Transmission

There is a huge difference in performance because the PowerShift transmission has two metallic clutches while automatic transmission uses liquid inside the torque converter as a medium to transmit power. The Automatic Transmission has lower paddle shift times compares to PowerShift transmission.

Power Shifting Transmissions handle high-performance shifting well, and they respond very quickly, unlike regular automatic transmissions. They only have 2 pedals, and if you prefer, you could leave the car in Drive the entire time and let it shift itself.

Most automatic transmissions have a lot of lag when the driver tends to manually shift the transmissions don't downshift very well. Automatic transmissions will also creep in when you remove your foot from the brake in Drive. They can also overheat & fail when stretched to the limits because all energy has to be transferred through the torque converter.


So, there you have it. It is no news that most car manufacturers are slowly tending towards powershift transmissions. They are slowly turning into a must-have for every high-end car you need to purchase. Powershift transmission is a modern day transmission in high-end vehicles that have come to stay. They offer the very best of automatic and manual driving experience. In Power Shift Transmission, gears can be changed variably without stopping the flow of power from the engine. The top-notch fuel efficiency and ability to maneuver in various types of terrain make customers and die-hard car fanatics to put in those extra dollars to purchase those vehicles. In the upcoming years, it will be a must-have for everyone.

If you enjoyed this explanation you might want to check out some of our other posts like What is a mechatronic unit ? or What is a CVT transmission ?