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Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Fiat 500 transmissions: 5 or 6 speed, Dualogic or MTA...

The Fiat 500 comes with a wide range of reliable, robust, sophisticated gearboxes: one is a mechanical unit (with 5 speeds for the 1.2 and 1.3, and with 6 speeds for the 1.4), the other is of the sequential robotized type named the Dualogic. The 500 Abarth comes with a heavy duty 5 speed and the 500 Abarth Assetto Corse a 6 speed extreme duty transmission. The 695 Abarth "Tributo Ferrari" has a robotized version of the normal 500 Abarth transmission dubbed the MTA.
Below is a list of the model numbers and technical specifications of the various transmissions fitted to the Fiat 500 and Abarth versions:

Fiat 500 with 6 speed manual

C514: Fiat 500 5 speed (1.2L motor)/6 speed (1.4L motor)
Max Input Torque: 150 Nm
Center Distance: 170, 182 mm
Length: 362 mm (5-sp), 410 mm (6-sp)
Mass: 33 Kg (5-sp), 35 Kg (6-sp)

Fiat 500 with Dualogic transmission

C514 MTA (Manual Transmission Automated): Fiat 500 with Dualogic
Max Input Torque: 145 Nm
Center Distance: 170 mm
Length: 362 mm (5-sp)
Mass: 42,5 Kg
FPT Electro hydraulic add-on, S-Cam

Fiat 500 Abarth with heavy duty 5 speed manual

C510: Fiat 500 Abarth, Fiat 500 Abarth esse esse
Max Input Torque: 206 Nm
Center Distance: 181 mm
Length: 380 - 395 mm
Mass: 36 Kg

695 Abarth "Tributo Ferrari" with paddle shifted 5 speed MTA

C510 MTA (Manual Transmission Automated): 695 Abarth "Tributo Ferrari"
Max Input Torque: 206 Nm
Center Distance: 181 mm
Length: 380 - 395 mm
Mass: 45 Kg
FPT Electro hydraulic add-on, X-Y

Abarth Assetto Corse with extreme duty 6 speed transmission*

M32 6 speed: Abarth Assetto Corse
Max Input Torque: 320 Nm
Center Distance: 197 mm (M32)
Length: 332 mm
Mass: 47 Kg (M32)
Reverse synchronized

Below is information taken from press releases on the various transmissions used on the 500.

The mechanical gearbox is very compact with a lot of attention paid to its shifter feel. This was made possible by the reduced inertia of the driven clutch plate and the introduction of new seals. The gearbox configuration is transverse with two cascading shafts, while the shifter mechanism is internal, with four selection levers.

Fiat C514 transmission cutaway view

The shifter assembly is a dual cable type, which filters out engine running roughness and vibration transmitted by the engine to the gear lever. The gears have teeth with extra covering, as well as fifth speed and final drive pairs that are given an extra finish after heat treatment (this improves quiet operation). The gearbox housing is light and absorbs noise efficiently, and has been fine tuned using the Finite Element Method.

The gear shifter of the Fiat 500 has a lockout mechanism that prevents the involuntary engagement of reverse.


Dualogic shifter

Magneti Marelli Powertrain produces robotized transmission or MTA (Manual Transmission Automated), where the manual transmission controls are replaced by an Actuation kit (plug-in) electronically controlled by a Transmission Control Unit (TCU)

This system allows:
•Automatic gear shift
•Automatic clutch

In this way the driver has the following options:
•Possibility to choose between manual or automatic transmission
•Manual transmission by joystick or paddle shifters at seering wheel
•No more clutch pedal

In addition all the information can be displayed on the dash board for a deeper awareness of the driver.

The Dualogic transmission is available on the 1.2 8v and 1.4 16v versions of the Fiat 500. The 695 Abarth "Tributo Ferrari" is equipped with a similar system but is called MTA (Manual Transmission Automated) and is controlled by a race-inspired paddle gearshift.

The Dualogic and the MTA automates the clutch and gear lever controls by means of an electro hydraulic servo, but maintains all the advantages of a dry clutch and a mechanical gearbox (weight, sturdiness and reliability, low energy consumption).

This sophisticated system improves the performance of the manual mechanical transmission components and increases driving safety because it avoids errors by the driver and prevents faulty maneuvers of the transmission system.

There are two operating modes: semiautomatic and automatic.

The first adopts the most advanced control strategies to guarantee the best performance. Gears are engaged using the lever on the facia. Because there is no clutch pedal, the device is controlled simply by moving the lever: forward to change up (toward the ‘+’ symbol), back to change down (toward the ‘-‘ symbol). A simple push is sufficient to ensure the transmission makes a fast, accurate gear change.

Dualogic/MTA controller

This is how the Dualogic transmission functions in semiautomatic mode. Most of the electric signals reach the control unit by CAN (Controller Area Network) and can be grouped in two large subgroups. In one, the data from the gearbox area, which make it possible to identify the engagement position, the selection, the clutch, and the operating pressure of the hydraulic kit, as well as the rotating speed of the clutch.

In the other, all the signals coming in from the control lever on the tunnel or the levers on the steering wheel (which are optional), that let the driver decide when he wants to change gear, and those from the other systems on the Fiat 500 (for example, the engine and braking system), which help to define the gear change precisely and repeatably. For example, coordination with the engine control unit makes it possible to change up without having to release the accelerator pedal or to automatically increase engine speed when changing down (double de-clutch).

Using these two groups of signals, the Dualogic gearbox can manage gear changes in a comfortable or sporty way, in the manual or automatic mode, interpreting the driver’s needs by analyzing the pedal position and the engine speed.

Once the engine on the Fiat 500 is started, any pressure on the brake pedal confirms that the driver is at the wheel, and enables first or reverse to be engaged (on a slippery surface it is also possible to set off in second). And to guarantee safety and prevent incorrect gear engagement, the system engages neutral automatically when a door is open with the engine running. The Dualogic device also prevents errors that might damage the engine or gearbox, by notifying the driver of emergency situations or incorrect maneuvers with warning lights and beeps.

The automatic mode of the Dualogic system offers two settings on the 1.2 version: Normal and Economy.

The Normal setting provides outstanding driving comfort, with brilliant acceleration and gear changes in all conditions. The Economy setting, on the other hand, is used to reduce fuel consumption, while still maintaining outstanding handling and comfort.
On the version for the 1.4 16v engine, the two settings are Normal and Sport (with the Sport button on the facia). The Sport setting activates a faster gear change logic that minimizes the torque gap and thus makes the car more ‘fun to drive’ for the driver.

In automatic mode, the system recognizes the road gradient (by means of a software algorithm) and modifies the gear shift point to ensure the best possible compromise between the driver’s needs, ground conditions and vehicle situation (speed and engine rpm).

Another feature peculiar to the Dualogic gearbox is its ability to measure the vehicle deceleration and adapt gear changes accordingly. For example, in semiautomatic mode, and particularly with a sporty driving style, the system changes down when the driver asks for a lower speed to take a corner with more gusto. In automatic mode, the system anticipates the change down so that the driver has the best speed to maintain the level of comfort or fuel economy.

The Dualogic system is the best compromise for drivers who prefer the enjoyment and entertainment of a manual shift, but like to know they can count on the convenience of an automatic.

With help from Fiat Group Press/Magneti Marelli
*photo courtesy of Archivio Perini

UPDATE: In 2015, North American Fiat 500 Abarths were offered with a new high-performance AISIN conventional torque converter type 6-speed automatic transmission.  You can read all about this transmission in the following articles:


Mark said...

Great info and great site. Good to see that someone is as excited about the car as I am. I am in the US and anxiously waiting the arrival of the 500 abarth. said...

Hey, thanks for checking out the site!

I can't wait to see the cars here. The regular 500 is said to start production the fourth quarter 2010 so we might see that (hopefully) Dec 2010. Marchionne says Jan 2011, so the exact time is still up in the air.

The Abarth is to follow about a year later. I'm hoping the fall/ winter 2011.

I'll keep this site updated as I get more info.

Best regards, Chris

Anonymous said...

I followed the UK and European forums on this car and there have been numerous problems with the Dualogic trans. I wonder if they are going to be improved by the time the 500 arrives here. said...

I too, follow the UK and European forums. I think you'll find the people who had an issue when the cars first came out were taken care of with a software update. After that, I haven't really seen a lot of comments.

I did read recently of someone mentioning that when slowing down to a low speed (5-10mph) and then suddenly stepping on the gas, the car would pause for a moment or so as it downshifted to first gear.

I think it was put down to getting used to how the car drives and maybe anticipating traffic and plan accordingly. Remember, some of these cars only have 69hp, and a simple tap of the gearshift will get you first gear in that situation;)

Unknown said...

What type of differentials do these transmissions have? Open, limited slip, etc.? said...

Luis said...
What type of differentials do these transmissions have? Open, limited slip, etc.?

Hi, Luis,

They are open differentials and the Abarth has electronic traction control added. Below is a description of TTC:

"The Abarth has “TTC” (Torque Transfer Control). TTC improves the transfer of torque from the engine to the wheels and in particular gives excellent handling on bends, making sports driving safer and more fun than ever."

HAMANN offers a limited slip and it is possible that the Quaife Automatic Torque Biasing differential may be available, too.

Best regards, Chris

Max said...

Hi, am very interested in the C514 transmission (for research purposes). Would you by any chance have (or come across) any info related to the materials used for gear fabrication? I've seen 4027, 4118, and 8620 steel thrown around but no concrete answers! Cheers!

Austin Davis said...

What colors will the car come in, and what type of interior will be available for the 500 when/if it comes to the USA

Paulo said...

Blog Congratulations!
I had the doubt if the New Uno to be released here in Brazil will rely on this MTA, here called Dualogic.
Paulo, from Brasilia, DF, Brasil.

jim said...

Is the engine a 4 cylinder? I didn't think it possible to think that a Hyundai Accent would be bigger than any car in US. 1974 carried a fiat 500 down a flight of stairs to harrass an Army platoon sgt. He cried like a baby until we carried it back up to ground level.

Anonymous said...

Sicuramente meglio un cambio Robotizzato con possibilità totalmente automatica , rispetto a un manuale con frizione manuale( ormai è roba antica ) .

Con in piu' la possibilità di avere i paddle al volante diventa un must .

Lavoro come tester per una rivista giornalistica di motori emergente ( di cui non farò il nome per non fare pubblicità ) e ultimamente ho potuto provare un prototipo del cambio FPT C510 MTA che monterà presto la nuova Abarth 500 C , dotato di modalità SPORT , e paddle al volante .

La velocità di cambiata in tale modalità è fenomenale , molto piu' di quanto sia possibile fare con un cambio manuale tradizionale , sia in aumento marcia che in scalata , si fà fatica a percepire la differenza con un cambio a doppia frizione ( come il DSG ) .

Presto lo recensiremo , ma già posso consigliarvelo . said...

Thank you for the comment, Amico.

I've translated the above in my shaky Italian:

The is a comment from someone who works as a road tester for an automotive magazine.

He says that a robotic transmission gives better shifting than the old fashioned antiquated manual shift/clutch.

Plus, having the paddle shifters behind the wheel is a must.

He says he has tested an Abarth 500C with the C510 MTA equipped with sport mode and paddle shifter.

He found in sport mode, the rate of change was phenomenal, much better than that of a traditional manual transmission, and it is getting increasingly difficult to tell the difference between the MTA and a Dual Clutch (DSG type) transmission.

He closes by saying a review will be out soon, but he can recommend it.
Mille Grazie!

Anonymous said...

I think you should also include the DDCT Dual Dry Clutch Transmission per your April 22 2010 post on this page. Nice Blog by the way. said...

Anonymous said...
"I think you should also include the DDCT Dual Dry Clutch Transmission per your April 22 2010 post on this page. Nice Blog by the way..."

Hi, yes that's a good idea.

I have an in depth post coming on the DDCT, just waiting on a few pics...

Thanks for the comment and the suggestion! Chris

Anonymous said...

I just had a rental with the dualogic "automatic" transmission in Italy (no stick shift cars left).
Although I LOVE the new Fiat 500 and would consider buying one (having driven nothing but V8's in the last 25 years!), the Dualogic transmission was the biggest piece of xxxx I have ever driven!
If this is the transmission they will offer in North America -where poeple are used to "normal" automatic transmissions- I cguarantee it will be a failure.

Unknown said...

got info from a chrysler insider

Models= 500/500c Lounge, 500/500c POP and 500/500c Sport.
5-sp C514 manual, 6-sp Aisin auto.

Anonymous said...

My buddy in high school had a Fiat 600D with suicide doors on it... We had blast in that car.. Once we were sitting at a red light and a big Plymouth Road Runner pulled be side us and began rev'ing the motor... My Buddy reved the 600D.... when the light changed he sidestepped the clutch and barely barked the tires as it lunged ahead of the road runner about 3 feet, then the RoadRunner left us in a cloud of burning rubber.. We were laughing so hard we could barely see.... At the next light I yelled at the RoadRunner driver that we had him for the first 6 feet... We all had a good laugh about it and still do when ever its one of those "remember when" times.....

Ika-kun said...

The M32 6-speed manual gearbox in the Abarth Assetto Corse - is this the same M32 6-speed tranny in the Chevy Cruze? They're both 6 speed manuals and have the same name...

Anonymous said...

Do any of the FIAT 500C Sport have to do regular maint. or oil changes to the transmission or is it sealed? What oil weight does it recommend if it does recommend change and at what miles?