Recently, I discussed about a new 8-speed automatic transmission coming from ZF, that could possibly be into a future Ram Heavy Duty pickup. Well, that new “Powerline” 8-speed automatic transmission isn’t the only thing making news at ZF and which could be coming to future Fiat Chrysler...
This is the main highlight for us:
"ZF has confirmed that mass production of its fourth-generation of its 8-speed automatic will begin in the 2022 calendar year. The supplier also announced that FCA has asked it to deliver its new 8-speed transmission for its rear-wheel-drive and all-wheel-drive vehicles with front-longitudinal drive configuration (or front-engine, rear-wheel-drive based platforms). So why is this important? The all-new fourth-generation 8-speed automatic is expected to play a big part of the plug-in hybrid electric vehicle (PHEV) and mild hybrid electric vehicle) (MHEV) lineup within the FCA portfolio, including the L-Series (Dodge Challenger and Dodge Charger) replacements which are slated to begin production around the same time frame."
So it looks like the next-gen Challenger will have some sort of mild hybridization. I realize some will shake their head in disgust at that, but I for one welcome it, as long as it's a reliable system. Something like the existing eTorque would be cool. Whatever helps these modern muscle cars get better gas mileage with our big old V8's and keep beating the government's fuel economy mandates. And the hybridization may even have performance benefits as well. So, I say why not?
Although, its probably important to realize that at least one of the two NA V8's will probably be going away soon, likely replaced by the Tornado turbo-I6. My money is on the 5.7, while the 392 will likely receive some major updates (hopefully).
Here's the other highlight:
"The newest version of the 8-speed automatic will still have four planetary sets and five sets of shift elements, which means it will continue to be an ultra-reliable transmission while it is evolving and being improved. The highly anticipated 48-volt electrified MHEV version is expected to have a ranking between 440 lb.-ft (597 Nm) and 735 lb.-ft (997Nm) of torque available."
So not only will we have hybridization, it looks like the next gen 8 speeds will be just as robust, if not more so, than the current gen. I'd be over the moon if they gave us NA guys a transmission that can easily take more than 510 lb ft. of torque, like the HP70 does.