New details on GMs upcoming 7-speed dual-clutch transmission have surfaced, although it’s probably not what you’re thinking. Those who don’t recall the first rumors of this new high-tech unit might jump to the conclusion that it’s a beefy unit designed for the next-generation Corvette and a select-group of Cadillacs. Quite the opposite is true.
In fact, the new 7-speed unit is being co-developed with GM’s partner in China, Shanghai Automotive and is designed for use in small (very small engines). It’s also for front-drive applications only, with the latest info indicating it is designed for anything with a displacement of 1.0 to 1.5 liters.
That might sound like we’ll never see the thing. But wait! The Chevy Cruze has a 1.4T engine. And with the Cruze already starting to lag behind in the fuel economy race, this new unit would likely give it a significant boost, easily topping the 40-mpg number of the Hyundai Elantra.
Another possibility, apart from use in other markets, is that it could be targeted for use in the Cadillac Urban Luxury Concept, which the automaker claimed made use of a dual-clutch setup. But will Cadillac really push ahead with a sort of MINI rival? Time will tell.