The development of the automotive industry does not stand still. People try to improve their life, make it more comfortable and convenient. Car manufacturers are trying to make driving as easy as possible for their customers. Due to this, various technologies are constantly being improved. Thus, an automatic clutch was attached to the manual gearbox. Putting these two elements together, the developers got the so-called robotic transmission, combining all the advantages and disadvantages of the units. The people also know the name "robot box".
Finding out the features of this design, you need to pay attention to the relevant reviews. The robot box requires specific handling, but in order to understand why, you will need to understand its design.
According to the preliminary description, one might think that in general the design is a simple automaton with a special control. However, it is not. Let's consider this issue in more detail.
The design is based on a mechanical box, which, according to reviews as professionals,and ordinary drivers, is considered more reliable than automatic. This can be understood by reading online reviews. The robot box has special devices. They are necessary in order to squeeze the clutch when shifting gears.
It is worth noting that, using a conventional manual transmission, the driver chooses the shift time himself. To do this, he focuses on what is happening on the road and uses the clutch pedal in conjunction with the lever of the transmission itself. When developing a new device that received controversial reviews from drivers, the robot box showed itself from a completely different side. It was decided to exclude from the above process the direct actions of the driver. All important switching is carried out by the computer. For the successful functioning of the robot, special actuator units were installed. Due to them, it became possible to shift gears, which is controlled by the computer itself.
Judging by the reviews, consumers note several main benefits. We are talking about huge fuel savings, ease of repair. Also, some consumers like the lack of a clutch pedal. Another benefit highlighted by drivers is the ability to manually change gear.
How does it work?
The box in question is powered by the actuator nodes we talked about earlier. They collect information about such details as driving speed, engine speed, and the operation of some sensors. Based on the received data, the computer decides whichtransmission must be activated. As far as drivers know, the servo is responsible for the clutch. It is he who receives the command to change the mode and disconnects the engine from the input shaft. During this process, the second servo is activated, it selects the gear that is needed and immediately engages it. A second later, the engine is reattached to the shaft, and the car continues on its way. This whole process happens as quickly as possible, so a person does not even notice. All he can notice is a small impulse, but nothing more. This is how this gearbox works - a “robot”. Check out the reviews below.
Servos come in two varieties. There are electric and hydraulic. The first is the engine, which is capable of moving the actuating part using a gearbox. Hydraulic operates through a special cylinder. It receives commands directly from the control unit.
During use, drivers identify the existing disadvantages and advantages. Of course, we need to talk about them. What statements can be found by examining the reviews? The robot box has its own characteristics. Let's take a look at the benefits first.
- Consumers note that, unlike the automatic and CVT, the robotic gearbox is reliable and more convenient.
- Almost all models of the described transmission are capable of operating in manual mode, in which the driver can shift gears himself.
- Many buyers notice thatthe robot box (positive reviews prevail) has a much smaller working volume. Accordingly, a small amount of oil is needed.
- If you put cars with different transmissions in the same driving conditions, then the robotic consumption is much less than others.
- The clutch of the described gearbox has a 30% higher resource.
- Consumers have noticed that the maintenance and repair work of such a transmission is much cheaper.
- The weight of a robotic gearbox is not as large as that of an automatic one. Due to this, it is easier to install it on a small car.
Disadvantages of the gearbox
Even with such a list of advantages, the device has its drawbacks, which, perhaps, scare away some of the drivers. Consider them.
- Unfortunately, the banal and cheapest robot boxes are not able to adapt to the special driving of a particular driver. In this, it was surpassed by an automatic transmission, which easily adapts to the style of driving. Here there is only one type of driving. It is sewn, as standard, into the firmware.
- If the robot box (reviews in this nuance are rather negative) is installed complete with an electric servo, then it shows a slight delay in operation. That is, the resulting pause between signal transmission and the switching itself sometimes reaches two seconds. This is not a serious disadvantage, but it can be inconvenient when driving evenly and accelerating.
- If hydraulic drive is used together withrobotic box, it should be noted that the switching is accelerated to almost 0.05 seconds. It seems like a small number, but you can feel it while driving. But such a drive is both expensive to buy and not cheap to install. Moreover, it heavily loads the engine in terms of energy, so it is often used in sports cars or other expensive cars.
Development of the gearbox - the emergence of the preselective
Due to the fact that the box has its drawbacks, the first developments were received rather poorly. The main thing that drivers did not like was the jerks that appeared when driving. Most likely, this was felt due to the low speed of work. But the developers, due to the low cost and ease of assembly, continued to look for solutions to the problems that arose.
In order to correct the situation and reduce the delay time when switching, the designers began to use gearboxes together with two clutches that work independently of each other. This made it possible to completely get rid of significant delays and jerks. The dynamics of the car has increased significantly; consumer demand has also risen sharply. Even then, the robot box began to gain popularity. Owner feedback has gradually improved.
Now let's talk about who was the first to use robotic gearboxes. The pioneers are Audi and the German Volkswagen. They have been installing such transmissions on their cars since 2003. Feedback on how exactly the box works on their cars will bedescribed below.
What did the use of a double clutch give? Due to it, the necessary gear is turned on before the previous one is turned off. And in this way, the machine continuously switches from one to another, while maintaining traction in the right amount. Such a robotic gearbox is called preselective. She is the second generation. Returning to the design of the device, it must be said that a conventional box of any type works with one primary and secondary shaft. The same design received two of them. For what? Each pair is responsible for either an odd or even transmission. The primary shafts are nested, that is, one is nested in the other. They are connected to the power unit by means of a multi-plate clutch.
Advantages and disadvantages of the second generation
By combining all the best developments of the second generation gearbox, that is, those that work with dual clutch, have a more economical and faster driving technology. They are also extremely comfortable to use. Due to small volumes, such a box is more rational and more cost-effective to use in small cars than an automatic one.
But even with a lot of pluses, there are some minuses. For example, unlike the first generation, such a transmission is much more difficult to repair. Moreover, it will come out in a decent amount, which not all drivers have. There was also a problem with torque earlier, but now this nuance has been completely eliminated.
Robot Boxby car "Opel"
In the model range of the Opel manufacturer, sometimes there are cars with a robotic gearbox. Unfortunately, there are more negative reviews about them than positive ones. Perhaps this is the fault of the Opel manufacturer itself.
The robot box we reviewed only works with 1 clutch. This brings some discomfort, as the driver can feel the gearshift process. Most of the cars are equipped with this option, but there are also models with the second generation.
According to reviews, it will take quite a long time to get used to the box, it is specific. However, this is possible, and after a decent interval of time it becomes as convenient as possible to use it. Separately, they note that the price tags for such machines and gearbox repairs are low, so this can be singled out as a separate advantage. It allows you to close your eyes to frivolous disadvantages.
Often, drivers note that it is necessary to reconfigure the clutch regularly. Due to the fact that the Opel manufacturer practically did not take care of this issue, the robot box (reviews about this are constantly found) seems to live its own life. It does not adapt to the driver's own driving style, so it can sometimes even stumble.
In general, few people advise buying an Opel car with a robotic gearbox. If you still have a desire to experience, then you should look at the most expensive options. However, keep in mind that you will have to follow the road twice as carefully so as not to miss it if you suddenlythe box will “slow down”.
Robot box on Opel Astra
We have already considered the general situation with Opel above, I would like to separately touch on the Astra car, which used a robot box. "Astra", reviews of which are controversial, but not bad, got the design of the first generation, so we can say that it is designed for an amateur. And we are talking about the process of operation, and not about repair. Some drivers note that it is better with such a box than with a mechanical one. However, at the same time, its work is much worse when compared with the usual and most well-known automated one. Many note that on the Astra, the robot box does not like traffic jams and sometimes starts to malfunction. Depending on the nature of the breakdown, the device can be much cheaper to repair than an automated transmission. However, it is impossible to say that this is true in all cases.
Robot box on Toyota Corolla
Given that each person has his own preferences in the selection of a car and its transmission, the driver himself will decide whether this Toyota is suitable for him. The robot box, which has good reviews in 80% of cases, shows normal operation. However, it still has some disadvantages.
Before you buy a car, many people think about what kind of transmission will be better? To do this, consider the advantages and disadvantages. We will do this, taking into account the reviews of the robot box.
"Corolla" with such equipment is dedicated to laudatory odes of drivers. They say that when workingconsumes a small amount of fuel. Moreover, it is easier to maintain and much cheaper. But there are also disadvantages. What? The machine shifts gears a little faster than the "robot". Sometimes it brings down the smoothness of work, which affects the dynamism of the ride and comfort in general. And also before you go anywhere in the winter, you always have to warm up the car. Otherwise, there is a high chance that the transmission will malfunction.
Not all drivers enthusiastically accept the fact that a robot box is installed on the Toyota Corolla. The reviews of most consumers make it clear that the machine is easy to operate and problems rarely occur. But again, you need to understand the specifics of the operation of such a transmission and be ready to adapt to it.
Robot box on Lada car
Let's consider the legendary car of a domestic manufacturer with a robotic transmission. Let's try to understand the advantages and disadvantages, given the reviews. Lada-Vesta, whose robot box is not liked by all consumers, has become widespread in the market. Everyone writes that it will take a long time to get used to it, but this is not a problem at all.
There are a lot of good reviews on the Web. They make it possible to understand that the main problem of such a box is only a too small (in comparison with automatic transmission) switching speed. Quite often, drivers do not use manual mode, as a rule, this is not required by the situation. Often, an urgent need appears only when driving in a large stream.cars. And as you know, the gearbox does not adapt to the specific driving style of the driver himself, so it is safer and more profitable to use manual mode.
Some consumers do not like the prospect of self-driving at all, because the transmission is given to the computer, and he must always manage it without human intervention.
Also of the advantages, consumers note that the robot box does not heavily load the power unit, so driving is as convenient and comfortable as possible. The process of gear shifting after acceleration is quite fast. However, still working with one clutch is almost the last century. This greatly slows down the development of such gearboxes, because the first generation models receive a lot of negativity in their address, and this reduces the popularity of the device itself.
In general, Lada Vesta is considered a normal inexpensive option. As a rule, those who are just learning to drive get it, more advanced people do not pay attention to it.
Robot box on a Ford Focus
Unfortunately, the feedback from the owners of the Ford Focus car was far from positive. We can safely say that it attracted a lot of negativity and condemnation towards the American manufacturer. The first driver did not like - the cost of repairs. Many write that, having learned its price, they wanted to resell the car and buy a “normal” one with an automatic transmission.
But this robot box still has some advantages. Reviews ("Focus" - notthe only model where a similar design was installed) allow us to confirm this fact. For example, a second generation box is installed on this car. During the trip, the maximum level of convenience and comfort is felt. The work is seamless and the shifting is almost imperceptible.
In general, some consumers advise buying such a car, others do not. It all depends on taste, as there are no serious flaws. However, when choosing, you need to think carefully and weigh everything, only then decide on such a serious step as buying a Ford robotic car. The robot box, the reviews of which we have already reviewed, is the most important detail in the car, it must be carefully selected.