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What is Continuously Variable Transmission?

Continuously Variable TransmissionWhat is continuously variable transmission (CVT), and why is it being embraced by many car manufacturers? Here’s a quick Q&A on this emerging technology.

Q. What is CVT?

A. Continuously variable transmission (CVT) is a technology that provides a vehicle with the precise amount of power it needs to travel efficiently at any speed.

Q. How is CVT different from conventional transmissions?

A. A conventional transmission has a series of set gears it moves through as a car changes speed. Today’s cars usually have from five to eight gears. A CVT does not use gears, but belts and pulleys to change torque on a continuous basis.

Q. What are the advantages of CVT?

A. The biggest advantage is better gas mileage. A vehicle equipped with CVT usually gets 6 to 10 percent better mpg than the same vehicle with a conventional transmission. The second advantage is better acceleration. A CVT-equipped vehicle can usually go from 0 to 60 mph 20 percent faster than it would with a gear-driven transmission.

Q, How does driving a car with CVT differ from driving one with a conventional transmission?

A. When you drive a conventional car, you tend to feel small jolts and jerks as the transmission moves through its various gears. There are no such “kicks” with a CVT. Also, engine noises can vary. Some people report that engines in CVT-equipped cars often sound like vacuum cleaners when traveling at certain speeds. Both sensations can be a bit unnerving at first. But you’ll get used to it!

Q. Is CVT available in manual?

A. No. CTV is, by definition, a form of automatic transmission.

Q. Which carmakers currently offer CVT?

A. Nissan currently offers the most CVT-equipped models, ranging from its subcompact Versa to its full-size Maxima. Subaru and Audi have also gotten into the CVT business. General Motors and MINI have so far resisted moving into the CTV arena.

Train for a Career in Automotive Technology at WyoTech

Transmissions are just one the subjects you’ll study as part of WyoTech’s Automotive Technology career training program. Available at WyoTech campuses in Blairsville, Pa.; Fremont, Calif., Laramie, Wyo., and  Beach, Calif. The 6-to-12 month program provides intensive hands-on training in all aspects of modern automotive diagnostics, repair and maintenance, including basic engine management, drivability diagnostics, drivetrain systems and chassis. Graduates of WyoTech’s Automotive Technology program often go on to find positions in automotive dealerships, auto repair shops and with auto parts retailers.

For more information on WyoTech’s Automotive Technology career education program, contact WyoTech today. Financial aid is available for those who qualify.

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