Continuously Variable Transmissions are Gaining Popularity

By Mister Transmission

Wondering if the next car you buy should be one with a CVT? It depends on if you want to drive a vehicle with gears or not

DAF 600 in 1959

Continuously Variable Transmissions (CVT) are not a new invention, and yet it’s only been in recent years motorists have become more familiar with them.

In 1958, the small Dutch manufacturer van Doorne Automobiel Fabriek (DAF) introduced the DAF 600. It was one of the first mass-produced cars with a CVT, but it was not a success. In 1987 Subaru rolled out the Justy, also built with a CVT. However, it too was a market flop for various reasons including concerns about CVT reliability, as well as the noise they omit.

Despite the bad rap they sometimes get, CVTs do provide advantages including a significant boost to an engine’s fuel efficiency when accelerating, and they reportedly cost less than modern eight- and nine-speed automatic transmissions.

What Is a CVT?

 

Nissan Murano 2003

Most automatic transmissions rely on gears to operate. CVTs, on the other hand, don’t have any gears at all. They operate using a system of variable pulleys connected by a belt, hence the alternative moniker, the pulley transmission.

When Japanese automaker Nissan launched its Murano crossover with a CVT in 2003, motorists started to warm up to them. Nowadays, CVTs are increasingly common on our roads. For instance, Nissan offers the CVT on many of its vehicles including the Murano, Altima, Maxima, Rogue, Sentra, and Versa. CVTs can also be found in some Audi A4 models, Jeep Compass and Patriot, BMW Minis, Mercedes-Benz Class Bs, select Honda Civic Hybrids, Mitsubishi Lancers, and some Toyota models. Chrysler and Ford both offered vehicles with CVTs but switched gears after a while due to consumers’ perception CVT reliability was questionable.

CVT Maintenance and Repair Advantages and Disadvantages

 

In general, CVTs are no more or less reliable than traditional automatic transmissions. But it may be their application are better suited to smaller cars than larger vehicles.

With that said, and when compared to conventional sealed automatic transmissions which can run for up to 100,000 kilometres or more before maintenance is required, proactive preventative maintenance on some CVT models may require frequent transmission fluid changes. Heat is the CVT’s biggest enemy. Thus there are specific oils required for these transmissions.

Do you have questions about CVTs or any other kind of transmission? Visit the Mister Transmission service centre nearest you and talk to our expert technicians to get the information you need.

 

Visit your nearest Mister Transmission location today!

7957km away
  • 6016 Almon St.
  • Halifax, NS
  • B3K 1T8
  • 902-702-7022

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Customer Reviews
This is the second time...
Kristian M
This is the second time I've visited Mr. Transmission. I originally contacted the location at jane and lawrence who advised they were swamped but put me in touch with someone at the Queensway location. Just as the previous experience, I have nothing but positive things to say. I would greatly recommend this location to anyone in need of automotive repairs.
Date: March 2, 2021
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Amazing service! Very friendly, and...
Joanne Wittick
Amazing service! Very friendly, and stayed in contact with me every step of the way. Couldn't beat the pricing and timing was second to none. Al and his staff are fantastic people. I would recommend Mr. Transmission on Essa Rd to anybody. In fact I already sent my boyfriend there and he is just as impressed with their service, professionalism, pricing and timing. Very happy I chose to go here!!
Date: March 2, 2021
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Chris was fantastic in walking...
Hubert Miller
Chris was fantastic in walking me thru the process. Straight up and honest.I am in the auto business have been repairing transmissions for years and have had some horror stories with costly bills.Not in this case. Fair and accurate.
Date: March 1, 2021
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Competitive pricing very straight forward...
Zakieh Accoumeh
Competitive pricing very straight forward easyto deal with
Date: February 28, 2021
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Honest knowledgeable friendly if you...
Albert Karadza
Honest knowledgeable friendly if you need transmission work don't go anywhere else those guys are the best
Date: February 28, 2021
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Dustin and Rory are honest...
Zakieh Accoumeh
Dustin and Rory are honest and take great care of their clients
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Honest
Leonard Yamniuk
Honest
Date: February 28, 2021
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Very impressed by Cecil and...
J A
Very impressed by Cecil and his crew. Took my 2006 Jeep Cherokee in for fuel injector issues and had it running like a dream in no time. Finding a good mechanic that you can trust and won't take you to the cleaners is important to me. I'll get my jeep done here from now on. Shout out to Fab for taking care of my baby.
Date: February 28, 2021
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Gary was magnificent and took...
Mike Marchese
Gary was magnificent and took excellent care of my car , not only was the timing great but the service was better than perfect and he ensured that my car will be in tip top shape when finished, i would highly recommend him for transmission issues and repairs as he is highly experienced and very knowledgable in the industry, overall a wonderful person to deal with!
Date: February 27, 2021
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Fixed our car also have...
Brandon Edwards
Fixed our car also have rental service
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