NISSAN’S XTRONIC CVT CONTINUES TO EVOLVE IN ITS THIRD GENERATION WITH D-STEP LOGIC CONTROL
Nissan is a forerunner in Continuously Variable Transmission technology and its latest models are now equipped with its third-generation XTRONIC Transmission with D-Step Logic Control.
The latest development in continuously variable transmissions (CVT), D-Step Logic Control is computer software that uses dynamic inputs like vehicle speed, accelerator pedal position and application speed to determine the ideal gear ratio needed to provide smooth, constant acceleration.
For drivers, it feels very much like the automatic transmissions they are familiar with. D-step shift logic can hold a constant gear ratio like a conventional step-gear automatic transmission but adds the flexibility and smoothness of a CVT.
The changes in the CVT that debuted in the 2017 Pathfinder received favorable attention from the automotive media:
“…Nissan’s many programming changes to the CVT are so substantial and so mimic a regular gearbox that if you did not know a CVT from a sock drawer, you would never question how the power from the engine is transferred..”- Autotrader
“Nissan has done exhaustive CVT development, and it shows to excellent advantage in the new Pathfinder.”
– Kelley Blue Book
D-Step Logic Control is found in other Nissan CVT equipped models such as 2019 Altima, 2019 Pathfinder, 2018 Murano and the sporty 2018 Maxima. RPMs build as speed increases providing enhanced drivability with a direct, crisp shift feel – there’s no “hunting” or shift shock. On CVT equipped Nissan SUVs like the 2019 Pathfinder, the advanced XTRONIC transmission design also helps keep engine RPM optimized while towing without the typical “hunting for a gear” feel.
In the 2019 Versa and 2019 Sentra models equipped with third-generation XTRONIC transmission, the gear ratio range from low to high is expanded. In fact, the transmission ratio is 7.3:1, which is a broader ratio than you’ll find in an average automatic, and far superior to the 6.0:1 you’d find in a similar model vehicle. The CVT is more streamlined, too, as it’s 13% lighter and 10% smaller. The goal is to ensure the fuel efficiency improves at least 10%.
WHAT IS A CVT TRANSMISSION?
A Continuously Variable Transmission (CVT) provides simple, efficient power delivery creating better fuel economy than traditional transmissions. With CVT, shifting is seamless – the vehicle performs as though it has a variable gear for every driving situation, and you won’t feel any shift shock. It uses a steel belt or chain and a pulley system to move up and down the gear ratio in continuously smooth motion, providing seamless, stronger acceleration and increased fuel economy.
CVT VS AUTOMATIC TRANSMISSION
The real difference between a continuously variable transmission (CVT) and an automatic transmission (AT) is that while both are technically automatic transmissions and don’t require the driver to use a clutch to manually change gears, a traditional automatic transmission has fixed gears -typically ranging from five to nine in number. Nissan’s XTRONIC CVT and all CVTs don’t have any traditional fixed gear ratios at all. There is no “shifting” in the conventional sense of the word.