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Chevrolet’s very first nine-speed transmission is finally rolling out, first debuting on the 2017 Malibu and then the 2017 Cruze Diesel and 2018 Equinox.

The new transmission is available with the 2.0-liter turbo four-cylinder 2017 Chevrolet Malibu and is said to be 3 percent more fuel efficient compared to the current six-speed automatic, netting a highway rating of 33 mpg. The new transmission also works with stop/start to increase fuel economy even more by shutting down the engine in stop-and-go traffic.

Chevrolet promises its nine-speed transmission, called the Hydra-Matic 9T50, will be refined and balanced, however, other automakers have experienced problems with their nine-speed units, mainly Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) brands like Jeep. The nine-speed automatic is generally becoming more mainstream, as it was once reserved for luxury cars like Mercedes-Benzes and Land Rovers.

Chevy’s transmission has a wider 7.6:1 overall ratio than the current transmission, which translates into a meaty first gear for brisk off-the-line acceleration and a tall final gear for low-rpm highway cruising.

'The smaller steps between the gears, compared to the six-speed, enable smooth, almost imperceptible upshifts, for excellent refinement,' said Dan Nicholson, vice president, Global Propulsion Systems. 'No matter the engine torque or vehicle speed, the 9T50 is always in the perfect gear.'

Nicholson added that the new transmission will be available on four Chevrolet models and 10 GM products by the end of next year.
Read more about the Chevy’s First 9-Speed Transmission Debuts on Malibu at AutoGuide.com.
 

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Didn't the 2016 2.0T already have an 8 speed auto, not the 6?

And yet, still the volume-seller, which would probably benefit largely from the better gear spacing, will soldier on with the 6 speed auto? I thought we were done with this saving the good transmissions for the up-level engines stuff. (terrible 4 spd vs 6 spd).
 

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Didn't the 2016 2.0T already have an 8 speed auto, not the 6?

And yet, still the volume-seller, which would probably benefit largely from the better gear spacing, will soldier on with the 6 speed auto? I thought we were done with this saving the good transmissions for the up-level engines stuff. (terrible 4 spd vs 6 spd).
Yes it had an 8-speed Aisin. I have to imagine the 1.5L will eventually get the 9-speed. Keep in mind, though, a lot of the time, the engines that benefit from the extra gear ratios are the ones with enough torque to handle the taller overdrives. So its very possible that, at least at this time, the 1.5L has better drivability with a 6-speed compared to a 9-speed. I'd rather they do it that way, than releasing vehicles like those that have an I-4 and the ZF 9-speed, where the trans works best with the up-level engines, and terribly with the low-end ones.

Can't wait to try it out in the 2nd-gen CTD!
 

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Maybe it wasn't ready in time for the mass production of the 1.5's. Or will have different ratios than the rest. I do hope that it doesn't spent the rest of its production cycle with the lesser automatic though - the ratios in 4,5, and 6 are wide.

Unlike the terrible Tigershark, the SGE engines have tons and tons of torque at the low end of the rev range though - I think the current Malibu knocks home full throttle shifts around the 5k mark, even lower than the LE2 in the Cruze.
 

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Maybe it wasn't ready in time for the mass production of the 1.5's. Or will have different ratios than the rest. I do hope that it doesn't spent the rest of its production cycle with the lesser automatic though - the ratios in 4,5, and 6 are wide.

Unlike the terrible Tigershark, the SGE engines have tons and tons of torque at the low end of the rev range though - I think the current Malibu knocks home full throttle shifts around the 5k mark, even lower than the LE2 in the Cruze.
More than likely yeah, timing was probably a key here, maybe final calibration work.

And the Tigershark is an absolutely god-awful engine. Taking the 2.4L World Engine, which was terrible, and strapping Multi-Air to the top hardly makes it any better.
 
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we have a 9 speed in our Cherokee. On the highway it can give this rig with 271 HP amazing mileage. We can travel at 110km/h from Halifax to Grandfalls NB and the computer reports 7.3 L/100km. I can get it down to 6.6L at 100km/h. The range is over 700km per tank on the highway. It takes getting used to. Sometimes it starts out in 2nd gear, 1st has a really low ratio. I have never gotten into 9th yet. I was told 9th was designed for the no speed limit German Highways. It will downshift itself to slow down and maintain the cruise control. I figure most manufactures will follow suit.
 

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we have a 9 speed in our Cherokee. On the highway it can give this rig with 271 HP amazing mileage. We can travel at 110km/h from Halifax to Grandfalls NB and the computer reports 7.3 L/100km. I can get it down to 6.6L at 100km/h. The range is over 700km per tank on the highway. It takes getting used to. Sometimes it starts out in 2nd gear, 1st has a really low ratio. I have never gotten into 9th yet. I was told 9th was designed for the no speed limit German Highways. It will downshift itself to slow down and maintain the cruise control. I figure most manufactures will follow suit.
9th gear on the ZF 9-speed generally will not be engaged unless you are coasting down a hill.
 

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Aren't these nine speeds going to be high maintenance? Aren't they going to be a lot heavier, more massive, and more prone to trouble? When is enough gears enough gears?
 

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Aren't these nine speeds going to be high maintenance? Aren't they going to be a lot heavier, more massive, and more prone to trouble? When is enough gears enough gears?
The same thing was probably said about 6-speeds when they debuted. After driving them, I can hardly stand to drive a 4-speed auto anymore.

But same packaged size, supposedly, don't know about weight, although weight loss seems to be a major focus for GM lately (they removed 27 lbs from the 6-speed 6T35 from Gen 1 to Gen 2 automatics). The 9 and 10-speeds don't even sound terribly complex when compared to dual-clutch transmissions. Just a set of planetary gears and fewer sets of clutches than I would have thought.

The real issue these days seems to be nailing down the shift programming - some manufacturers are better at it than others. GM's first-gen Cruzen automatics missed the mark IMO.
 

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Bumping this because I drove a 2017 Malibu Premier 2LZ with the 2.0T and 9-speed.

Hate it. Too many gears and it can't decide what gear to be in. Some shifts were pretty hard too. Keep in mind this car has some miles on it for test drives, so I think after a few hundred it's "adapted" by now.

The only plus I seen was cruising on a highway at 60 mph at 1100 rpm's.
 

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1100rpm!? That's crazy.

I wish GM would bring in a common bell housing so you could fit a 9 speed to a earlier model with a 6 speed. I know wishful thinking.
 
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1100rpm!? That's crazy.

I wish GM would bring in a common bell housing so you could fit a 9 speed to a earlier model with a 6 speed. I know wishful thinking.
Or maybe one with a three speed. Like a 1998 Cavalier.
 

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1100rpm!? That's crazy.

I wish GM would bring in a common bell housing so you could fit a 9 speed to a earlier model with a 6 speed. I know wishful thinking.
Or maybe one with a three speed. Like a 1998 Cavalier.
That'd be even better. They should get a common mount setup too
 

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Why the heck were they still using 3 speeds in 1998?! Our 87 Buick had a 4!
They used it all the way up until 2002! The Neon also used one up until 2001.

If I ever (have to) rebuild the engine, I'll be swapping in the 4-speed auto, for the Overdrive while it's all out.

My '86 IROC had a 4-speed (700-R4) - then again, so does my Cobalt.
 

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Bumping this because I drove a 2017 Malibu Premier 2LZ with the 2.0T and 9-speed.

Hate it. Too many gears and it can't decide what gear to be in. Some shifts were pretty hard too. Keep in mind this car has some miles on it for test drives, so I think after a few hundred it's "adapted" by now.

The only plus I seen was cruising on a highway at 60 mph at 1100 rpm's.
Its funny, i tried the exact same car with the 8 speed instead (2016 model) and i loved it. Tranny was super smooth and fast.
 
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