Stellantis And Magna's Ingenious New Transmission Enters Production

Technology / Comments

This new mild-hybrid-specific transmission improves fuel economy and offers improved driving dynamics.

At the beginning of the year, the Stellantis Group appeared to be far behind in terms of electrification. Now, it's arguably close to leading the charge after a series of introductions across multiple brands. The last round of announcements concerned Jeep and its first-ever EV for the American market, the Recon.

The next announcement comes via Magna, which recently signed a multi-program agreement with Stellantis to produce additional future mild-hybrid models.

These hybrid models are made possible by Magna's 48-volt hybrid dual-clutch transmission, which is not yet available in the USA. This transmission has now started production in Kechnec, Slovakia, and debuts in the Jeep Renegade and Compass and the Fiat 500 X hybrid in Europe, but it's expected to make its way stateside soon enough.

Frontal Aspect Jeep Magna
Frontal Aspect

Magna's seven-speed dual-clutch incorporates an e-motor that provides up to 236 lb-ft of torque. It's powered by a 48V system and is strong enough to power the vehicle for short distances without using the ICE component. It comes standard with torque-split technology and can optimize power flow between combustion and electric motors. Magna's new mild-hybrid gearbox has independent on-demand cooling for the clutch and e-motor with a single oil circuit for cooling and lubrication. According to Magna, this results in significant CO2 reductions and "improved driving dynamics due to electric torque vectoring and traction support."

"Our scalable transmission technologies aid our customers in their transition to vehicle electrification, which help to achieve regulatory targets," said Tom Rucker, President of Magna Powertrain. "The transmission enhances both efficiency and performance. We are excited that Stellantis has awarded Magna this hybrid transmissions business across multiple vehicle models, a testament to our expertise and capabilities."

Jeep 2019-2022 FIAT 500X Crossover Frontal Aspect CarBuzz
2019-2022 FIAT 500X Crossover Frontal Aspect

It's unclear when the gearbox will debut, but we can take an educated guess. Jeep recently announced the 2023 model year upgrades for the Renegade, which does not include a hybrid model.

That leaves three options. Fiat could introduce the mild-hybrid 500X, which uses a 1.5-liter four-cylinder. Combined with this transmission, it produces 130 horsepower and 177 lb-ft of torque. The Jeep Compass is also in desperate need of a new powertrain, and rumors suggest it might get a new engine soon.

The most likely candidate, however, is the Alfa Romeo Tonale, finally arriving early next year. Alfa launched the car with ICE and plug-in hybrid engine options, and the mild-hybrid option was introduced a month later. It's equipped with this gearbox and a turbocharged version of the 500X's 1.5-liter four-pot and produces 256 hp and 295 lb-ft of torque.

The Tonale PHEV has been confirmed for the USA, but it's unclear whether the mild-hybrid will be part of the range.

2023 Alfa Romeo Tonale Front Angle View Alfa Romeo

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Frontal Aspect 2023 Alfa Romeo Tonale Front Angle View 2019-2022 FIAT 500X Crossover Frontal Aspect

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