The Dart Story: Dual Dry Clutch Transmission

 

On the 2013 Dodge Dart SXT, Rallye, and Limited models equipped with a 1.4L MultiAir engine, there’s a new and innovative type of transmission available that many Americans have never sampled before:  the Dual Dry Clutch Transmission, or DDCT for short.

 

The concept behind the DDCT is to provide the convenience and pure driving ease of a fully automatic transmission with the performance and fuel efficiency of a manual gearbox. You don’t have to compromise to get the best of both worlds — it’s a win/win.

 

The “dual-clutch” in the name might throw people off:  Yes, there are two dry-fiber clutch assemblies inside the transmission. However, there’s no clutch pedal for the driver to operate – only a shift lever with the traditional P, R, N, and D positions we know so well.

 

And in ordinary driving, DDCT is intended to operate like any automatic; or, when the driver wants to take charge, they can use the AutoStick® feature in the shift lever to up/down-shift manually.

 

Dodge engineers focused on making the Dart’s transmission as silky and unobtrusive as possible.  The early reviews are already coming in, and the reports are they succeeded.  One road tester noted that the DDCT-equipped Dart doesn’t sound, operate, or behave much differently, if at all, than a standard automatic transmission.

 

And that’s the whole idea.

 


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  • SUBLIME

    So this is just another way of making an automatic transmission.  Well, if it gets better gas mileage, is lighter, and less expensive, than it is worth it.  If it doesn’t, than what is the point?

    • Lefty Wilbury

      I wish they would let us  change the color of the interior lights and dash …..  would be cool to see it in other colors :)

  • Rallye

    When driving in manual mode, you have the option do downshift to a stop. It will automatically downshift to a stop…by letting it automatically downshift in manual mode, is this effecting the transmission negatively?

    • Mike Latta

      No forgetting to downshift in manual mode does no harm to the trans. It simply holds the selected gear (eg: 3rd or 4th) while slowing until the gear is no longer allowed and then it coasts down to 1st and is again ready and waiting for u to upshift manually. I have the SXT/Ralleye with the 2.0 L and this trans and I love it! Yes In “D” mode it drives exactly like any other automatic and likely gets the best fuel economy. In Manual mode you have better control over the performance curve of the engine and in turn you have much better performance. Excellent combination, well done Dodge!

      • Kardamio

        Hey Mike Latta, I have the same model as you. I have a question for you about it. I have done a lot of pondering about if I should have gotten the turbo. Why did you choose the 2.0? What do you think might be advantages of the 2.0? Actually I’m bummed that now the 2014 comes with the 2.4! There was no way my old car would’ve held up long enough to wait for it though. Not that I knew it was coming anyway. Plus that’s just how it always goes.

        • Mike Latta

          Hey Kardamio. First I incorrectly stated in my above post that I have the DDCT trans as I thought I did but discovered later it was only ever mated to the 1.4L I bought my Dart in June of 13 in Edmonton AB Canada. The trim/color choices available at that time were slim so really it was the color and option packages and mainly the fact that it was an auto trans that were deciding factors for me. I can drive a stick but my sweetie can’t and we both need access to both vehicles. The engine choice wasn’t really a consideration as at the time the 2.4 wasn’t available and the other 2 are very similar performance wise minus the turbo lag and other issues that plagued the early 1.4′s. I’m very happy with the 2.0, especially after getting the pcm/bcm/tcm modules flash updated with the new software at my dealer. It’s a solid engine and obviously simpler than the turbo so less prone to failures in my opinion. Ya I’m kinda choked too that that 2014′s come standard with the 2.4L now but as you said, we took what we could get at the time.