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      11-30-2007, 04:20 AM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lil. Lucas View Post
I still have "really" bad memory's of SMG1 in the E36 M3 (Euro spec)...
SMG I was a very early automated manual. That was indeed "testing the waters" a bit both by BMW and by you. I think it is fair to say that it was testing the waters much more so than an early purchase of DCT will be. Why?

1. Production vehicles are already out with truly fantastic DCTs (Audi and VW with DSG and soon Mitsubishi (granted I did post that topic about Mitsu having production problems with their DCT and the lead engineer also admitted some problems with launch control in a Evo review...) ).
2. The software for a DCT can be highly similar to the software for an SMG, a big plus and a risk reducing factor.
3. DCTs are really big news in the tranny industry. They will generate billions of dollars of revenue and will soon replace a sizeable percentage of MTs and ATs. Well only if you believe the CEOs of many transmisson suppliers... Point here is that big R&D money has already been spent and will continue to be spent. This was not the case with SMG, never. Granted there was some racing dollars spend on SMG.

Are you personally ready to dive in to another automated manual?
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      11-30-2007, 04:33 AM   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by swamp2 View Post
SMG I was a very early automated manual. That was indeed "testing the waters" a bit both by BMW and by you. I think it is fair to say that it was testing the waters much more so than an early purchase of DCT will be. Why?

1. Production vehicles are already out with truly fantastic DCTs (Audi and VW with DSG and soon Mitsubishi (granted I did post that topic about Mitsu having production problems with their DCT and the lead engineer also admitted some problems with launch control in a Evo review...) ).
2. The software for a DCT can be highly similar to the software for an SMG, a big plus and a risk reducing factor.
3. DCTs are really big news in the tranny industry. They will generate billions of dollars of revenue and will soon replace a sizeable percentage of MTs and ATs. Well only if you believe the CEOs of many transmisson suppliers... Point here is that big R&D money has already been spent and will continue to be spent. This was not the case with SMG, never. Granted there was some racing dollars spend on SMG.

Are you personally ready to dive in to another automated manual?
Great points made, I agree with you totally. All confidence was regained after the first test drive in an E46, and has been problem free for the last two years We also have a golf GTi with DSG in the stable, so I'm more then aware for the advantages/disadvantages of automated manuals
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      12-02-2007, 06:25 AM   #25
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Just found a couple articles through googlig that claim BMW will (sic) unveil M-DCT at one of the major US autoshows (Detroit or LA). Since LA is gone and I certainly did not see/hear a peep about it there what do you all think the chance are that we will see DCT in Detroit?
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      12-02-2007, 08:10 AM   #26
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Originally Posted by swamp2 View Post
Just found a couple articles through googlig that claim BMW will (sic) unveil M-DCT at one of the major US autoshows (Detroit or LA). Since LA is gone and I certainly did not see/hear a peep about it there what do you all think the chance are that we will see DCT in Detroit?

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      12-02-2007, 09:24 AM   #27
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      12-02-2007, 10:03 AM   #28
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I would love to get M-DCT as well, but were there not a lot of issues with the M5's tranny, some of which kept some cars in the shop for repeated and extended periods? I realize that the M3's tranny should be better, but I would be concerned about some teething issues.

I hope that the M3's resale holds up well -at least in the near term- as I am on another list. I plan to get the manual and trade for the DCT equipped M within a year or so.
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      12-02-2007, 10:35 AM   #29
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Originally Posted by devo View Post

I hope that the M3's resale holds up well -at least in the near term- as I am on another list. I plan to get the manual and trade for the DCT equipped M within a year or so.
That sounds like at least a 10 to 15 K hit, if you really plan on trading the 6 MT in for the M-DCT within a year or 2.

I think this M3 is going to suffer the fate of all current generation BMW M cars in America right now - a surplus of vehicles available on dealer lots due to overpricing. Which means you'll have a harder time getting rid of your 6 MT without taking a huge initial owner depreciation hit.
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      12-02-2007, 10:47 AM   #30
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The issues that ensue from the MDCT will most likely be software related and vice mechanical, as the software for these trannies is very complicated. Therefore, one can assume software bugs will be remedied easily but will require trips back to the dealer. But who knows....

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      12-02-2007, 10:52 AM   #31
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This technology has come a long way in the past decade. While it is true that there might be some issues during the initial year, I don't think they will be severe. If there was a severe design flaw, it would be fixed in the next model year, and BMW would replace your transmission with the redesigned version. I think that it is pretty much the worst case scenario.
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      12-02-2007, 10:58 AM   #32
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I'm hoping for 430 Scuderia type performance from this gearbox...I mean just look who were #1 and #2 in F1 this year!!
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      12-02-2007, 08:20 PM   #33
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gadget View Post
Considering how important the transmission is to the car, I think i will wait a few months after the M-DCT is released before greeting one to make sure there are no major flaws.
+1

the launch record of new electronic transmissions - not just Bimmers - has been spotty. Be wise to ensure it's "sorted" 1st.
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      12-02-2007, 09:03 PM   #34
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I'm hoping for 430 Scuderia type performance from this gearbox...I mean just look who were #1 and #2 in F1 this year!!
Remember the video. It has been reported that dual clutch units are both smoother and faster than the Scuderia system which is only a 1st generation AMT - an SMG. Hard to believe, amazing but it all makes sense.
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      12-02-2007, 11:00 PM   #35
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Quote:
Originally Posted by swamp2 View Post
Remember the video. It has been reported that dual clutch units are both smoother and faster than the Scuderia system which is only a 1st generation AMT - an SMG. Hard to believe, amazing but it all makes sense.
I just spent an hour watching all the youtube Scuderia review videos and of course the dual clutch will be faster but the two reviewers mentioned in their video reviews that they liked the Scuderia because you got just the perfect amount of "jolt" from the shift...similar to shifting a manual...whereas the dual clutch (VW/Audi) is so smooth it takes too much away...anyways I'll be happy with any well performing system and will seriously consider it over the 6mt...I probably won't be buying till my 335 lease ends in '09 but by then I'll have read and seen it all!!
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      12-02-2007, 11:44 PM   #36
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lucid View Post
This technology has come a long way in the past decade. While it is true that there might be some issues during the initial year, I don't think they will be severe. If there was a severe design flaw, it would be fixed in the next model year, and BMW would replace your transmission with the redesigned version. I think that it is pretty much the worst case scenario.
The nice thing about 6MT is it is at the zenith of it's technology, sorta of speak. It is a safe choice for someone like me who plans on keeping the car well past warranty. With DCT you are going to have DCT 2 in the near future and probably a whole new kind of transmission in the not so distant future.

This initial version of DCT may be bug laden and outdated fairly quickly. Imagine, if you may, the costs of fixing it out of warranty. Look at the first version of SMG, not exactly old technology and not exactly a highly sought after transmission. How long will SMG have been in BMW's stable vs how long they will have offered manual transmissions? People may think manuals may be on their last legs, but I believe that in the future they will be highly sought after and will at some point make a come back. Too many baby boomers with childhood memories of sports cars sporting manuals.

I believe Porsche will likely always offer manuals transmissions and I hope BMW will follow suit. MTs are kind of like the game of baseball, slower paced and yet packed with nuances that many from a younger generation never really understand or appreciate. Just take teenagers to a baseball game and watch how quickly they become "bored" with the game. The same goes for MT's, it will never be understood by many from a generation overstimulated by video games.

I am still looking forward to seeing how BMW's DCT will turn out. It may end up being a great fit for the M3.

For those who are leasing the car and thus do not have the same warranty concerns of owners, I can see the benefits of DCT.

Ironically, I just think I would get bored too quickly if I couldn't row my own gears. I wouldn't know what to do with my left foot. Probably hit the brake occasionally, as I am proned to do when driving automatics.

Last edited by ruff; 12-03-2007 at 12:21 AM.
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      12-03-2007, 12:27 AM   #37
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ruff View Post
The nice thing about 6MT is it is at the zenith of it's technology, sorta of speak. It is a safe choice for someone like me who plans on keeping the car well past warranty. With DCT you are going to have DCT 2 in the near future and probably a whole new kind of transmission in the not so distant future.

This initial version of DCT may be bug laden and outdated fairly quickly. Imagine, if you may, the costs of fixing it out of warranty. Look at the first version of SMG, not exactly old technology and not exactly a highly sought after transmission. How long will SMG have been in BMW's stable vs how long they will have offered manual transmissions? People may think manuals may be on their last legs, but I believe that in the future they will be highly sought after and will at some point make a come back. Too many baby boomers with childhood memories of sports cars sporting manuals.
Automanual transmissions will be improved upon the same way engines are improved upon. The fact that the next generation engine will be "better" has not kept me from buying a car (unless the engine is in its last year of production or something). I think the same thinking applies to DCT. Yes, in 5 years I might have a car with an outdated automanual transmission, but I would probably be in a position to say the same thing about the engine, too--especially considering this generation engine does not have DFI. So, that doesn't concern me.

I haven't driven an SMG car, but I get the sense that SMG wasn't exactly there in terms of versatility and performance. DCT should deliver--at least on paper it seems to. So, as long as it performs well, I won't have reason to think about how much better the next generation might be, and wish I didn't have the first generation. If it doesn't perform well, I guess the joke's on me.

Yes, it is true that DCT is more complicated than a manual transmission and therefore might incur higher maintenance costs after the warranty expires. But, my principle has been to get rid of the car after 4-5 years, and I plan to do the same with the M3, but you never know. I can see how one would be concerned if one was planning to keep the car for much longer than that.
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      12-03-2007, 01:23 AM   #38
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ruff View Post
Ironically, I just think I would get bored too quickly if I couldn't row my own gears. I wouldn't know what to do with my left foot. Probably hit the brake occasionally, as I am proned to do when driving automatics.
+1

It basically comes down to boredom for me as well, flying airliners can get boring too sometimes, so we disconnect the autopilot and autothrottle and hand fly

Having said that I am yet to drive a car with paddle shifters or a tiptronic box and I wonder if there is still some level of involvement from these cars compared to the old T-bar auto.
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      12-03-2007, 02:00 AM   #39
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Quote:
Originally Posted by arbitrage View Post
I just spent an hour watching all the youtube Scuderia review videos and of course the dual clutch will be faster but the two reviewers mentioned in their video reviews that they liked the Scuderia because you got just the perfect amount of "jolt" from the shift...similar to shifting a manual...whereas the dual clutch (VW/Audi) is so smooth it takes too much away.
This subset of arguments against DCT are just smaller versions and perhaps a bit more subtle flavors of the exact same basic argument of MT vs. DCT. The shift jolt is simply another antiquated prerequisite we place on high performance automobiles. All of our experience with cars, racing and especially high performance cars has convinced us that rough = fast = good. Now with the advent of other options we simply have a very difficult time psychologically giving up this false prerequisite we have on high performance. Shift jolts, especially those that SMG is known for, are something in almost all other mechanical and experiential systems is normally considered bad. How often do folks say about anything, "wow that was really rough and full of shock - great it felt high quality and I enjoyed it"??? Shock causes increased wear, higher loads, and greater possibilities for the loss of traction. As this translates to DCTs they offer: smoother operation, more continuous power to the ground, greater fuel efficiency, less wear from mechanical shock, an improved NVH quality and most of all improved acceleration.

I do understand the hesitation and the basic psychology. The violence, speed, surge and entire brutal experience of SMG while set in the most aggressive manual mode, while shifting at WOT, simply feels good; it feels powerful and it feels fast. We need to use our knowledge and rational capability to convince ourselves that despite what we feel, what we are used to, what we are comfortable with and just what seems to make sense, actually is not better nor faster.

You can also use some simply analogies to help yourself along here. When taking off in a jet you really enjoy the constant and even acceleration don't you? A DCT will feel much more like a jet than an SMG (not with regards to the actual acceleration level, but with regards to the smoothness of the speed vs. time curve - the "smoothness" in the feel). Do you feel like you need jerky, neck snapping gear shifts in a jet to appreciate the very strong and very even acceleration? I know I don't.

Again whether it is on the basic question of MT vs. DCT or why feature X of a MT is either better or missing with DCT, put some real thought into it, think a bit about the physics, look at the data that already exists and you can have a much more insightful view of the debate and of your own biases.
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      12-03-2007, 04:29 AM   #40
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First, the the manny tranny.

Then the chick stick.

Now the poof paddles.

/me fits flame suit
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      12-03-2007, 05:51 AM   #41
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Quote:
Originally Posted by swamp2 View Post
This subset of arguments against DCT are just smaller versions and perhaps a bit more subtle flavors of the exact same basic argument of MT vs. DCT. The shift jolt is simply another antiquated prerequisite we place on high performance automobiles. All of our experience with cars, racing and especially high performance cars has convinced us that rough = fast = good. Now with the advent of other options we simply have a very difficult time psychologically giving up this false prerequisite we have on high performance
....
Again whether it is on the basic question of MT vs. DCT or why feature X of a MT is either better or missing with DCT, put some real thought into it, think a bit about the physics, look at the data that already exists and you can have a much more insightful view of the debate and of your own biases.
Right on mark.

This is why people overvalue torque, hate understeer, and often spend way to much effort on shifting. Things that people think makes them fast are often not the things that would really make them fast.

DCT is to the MT what fuel injection was to the engine. Its just better in every way except you ability to tinker with it. As to the jolt on shifts, DCT may still have that. Its not a relic of MT gearboxes, I have seen autos do the same. When a car shifts the engine RPMs have to drop for the next gear. Now the flywheel and engine internal have considerable rotational energy that has to go somewhere. You can shift slow and let it dissipate. You can slip the cluth (or torque converter in autos) in the next gear. Or in S6 you just engage the next gear and dissapate most of the energy right to the rear wheels.

Now if you plan for super fast shifting and don't want to destroy clutches you use a lightweight flywheel so there is less stored energy to deal with. The M3 GTR took this to the extreme that at idle when they shut the engine off it stopped moving within one revolution. This also made the car really trick to start off the line as it would stall real easy.

Bottom line is we don't know how smooth the DCT will shift. It has the ability to be super smooth or much like the E46 in S6. Depends on the software the BMW puts in and the flywheel(s) they choose.
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      12-03-2007, 01:40 PM   #42
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Quote:
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Right on mark.

This is why people overvalue torque, hate understeer, and often spend way to much effort on shifting. Things that people think makes them fast are often not the things that would really make them fast.

DCT is to the MT what fuel injection was to the engine. Its just better in every way except you ability to tinker with it. As to the jolt on shifts, DCT may still have that. Its not a relic of MT gearboxes, I have seen autos do the same. When a car shifts the engine RPMs have to drop for the next gear. Now the flywheel and engine internal have considerable rotational energy that has to go somewhere. You can shift slow and let it dissipate. You can slip the cluth (or torque converter in autos) in the next gear. Or in S6 you just engage the next gear and dissapate most of the energy right to the rear wheels.

Now if you plan for super fast shifting and don't want to destroy clutches you use a lightweight flywheel so there is less stored energy to deal with. The M3 GTR took this to the extreme that at idle when they shut the engine off it stopped moving within one revolution. This also made the car really trick to start off the line as it would stall real easy.

Bottom line is we don't know how smooth the DCT will shift. It has the ability to be super smooth or much like the E46 in S6. Depends on the software the BMW puts in and the flywheel(s) they choose.
Excellent points. Indeed your or my ability to tinker with a DCT may be quite small but the ability of custom sofware to completely change the character and performance of the system is a real possbility! Without changing any hardware this is a pretty amazing possibility.

The flywheel will inded be a critical part of the equation on smoothness. Although we can not say with certainty that BMWs version of the M-DCT will shift super smooth I would say it is quite a safe bet to place that even in its most aggressive mode it will shift remarkably smoother than SMG II on S6. Both VW and Mitsubishi seems to have produced trannnies that offer fantastic performance and amazing smoothness, there is no essential reason BMW can not do the same.

Lastly on your point about a low mass flywheel design being more difficult to start from a stop - don't you imagine careful computer control of clutch and some assistance with throttle, again by computer, could help overcome most of that?
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      12-03-2007, 02:06 PM   #43
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Quote:
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Lastly on your point about a low mass flywheel design being more difficult to start from a stop - don't you imagine careful computer control of clutch and some assistance with throttle, again by computer, could help overcome most of that?
Sure it can. This was just never an option for the SMG2 cars since they shared this part with the MT.

One thing I forgot. Perceived smoothness will benifit from the acceleration not dropping below the previous gear. It may still spike well above either but without the drop to well below zero its likely to be felt as far less even if the spike reaches a similar peak.
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      12-03-2007, 05:10 PM   #44
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Quote:
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Right on mark.

This is why people overvalue torque
Maybe on the track. However, on the street, a high redline is overvalued and torque is undervalued.
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