Mercedes-Benz introduces new 9-speed automatic transmission

By Bob Nagy on July 25, 2013 12:01 PM

Moving ahead in its quest to improve fuel economy, Mercedes-Benz has rolled out a new 9-speed automatic in Europe. Although the initial use is in the already-frugal E350 Bluetec diesel 4-door and wagon models starting in September, Mercedes says this new 9G-Tronic cog changer is suitable for all kinds of rear- and all-wheel drive applications -- including hybrid and plug-in hybrid drive systems. Although no time schedule was released, the automaker has confirmed that ultimately the 9G-Tronic will be used in almost all of its models and with a variety of different engines in the coming years. As for a potential ETA in America, M-B sources have so far indicated only that it will not be part of the 2014 lineup here.

Also: 10 Best Luxury SUVs

Engineered to be as small and light as possible, this new 9-speed automatic bests M-B's current 7G-Tronic transmission in both of those key areas but is still capable of handling up to a very AMG-like 737 lb-ft of peak torque. In addition to its even wider total-ratio spread that allows for higher vehicle speeds at lower engine rpm, the 9G-Tronic also features a new controller system that significantly increases hydraulic efficiency within the transmission to further enhance fuel economy. Engineered to deliver even quicker and smoother shifts than the 7G-Tronic, this new 9-speed can skip several gears during certain acceleration/deceleration situations and also has a selectable manual-style Sport mode that allows for even more spontaneous response to driver inputs. 

Also: 10 Best Sedans Under $25,000

As for its real-world results, Mercedes notes that while an E350 Bluetec diesel fitted with the new 9G-Tronic sees no change in its 0-60 mph sprint time, the new transmission does contribute to a 3-mpg bump in its city fuel economy and adds 2 mpg to the car's highway number. Those are the kind of hard facts that should put the new 9G-Tronic on a fast track to the U.S., most likely in one or more members of the 2015 M-B lineup.

More New Technology...

Ford and GM are teaming up on new 9- and 10-speed automatic transmissions

The next-gen Honda Civic will get a new Earth-Dreams direct-injection engine

Volvo has revealed a new super-efficient diesel engine technology


Thanks for Supporting
Kelley Blue Book.
We deliver up-to-date car values, expert reviews and unbiased reporting at no
cost to you. To do this, we display ads from only trusted automotive partners.

To continue on our site, simply turn off your ad blocker and refresh the page.