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Schaeffler's DCT and new Jazz Hybrid is the path to Future Mobility
It’s not only Indians who are obsessed with fuel economy. The global automotive industry is finding solutions since a long time but the approach is different. In India, the easy and affordable answer is buying a small efficient car. While this is a simple solution, it restricts you from a large range of cars in higher segments, just because the running costs are too high. But what if bigger cars could be as efficient?
A step above microcars, or entry-level hatchbacks as we know it, is the premium hatchback. Let’s take the example of the Honda Jazz Sports Hybrid and the dual-clutch transmission displayed by Schaeffler at the 2013 Tokyo Motor Show. Known as the Fit Hybrid in Japan, the Jazz Hybrid is powered by a 1.5-litre i-VTEC engine and an electric motor mated to Honda’s 7-speed i-DCD transmission. The i-DCD is nothing but a dry double clutch transmission, but the way it works is what’s clicking for Honda.
The double clutch system is provided by global components major, Schaeffler. The gearbox engages the electric motor at standstill and take-off to drive the car. At low speeds the electric motor stays engaged but as you accelerate harder, the DCT engages the petrol engine and regenerates the electric motor. Once you are cruising, the electric motor engages again and under hard acceleration, both the units work together. When you are cruising at high speeds or decelerating, the petrol engine is powering the car and the electric motor is regenerating power.