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Two-pedal M3 lives

Twin-clutch: Robotised manual M-DCT gearbox makes M3 faster.

BMW finally reveals details of the M3's first double-clutch manual transmission

22 Jan 2008

BMW has finally admitted the existence of a double-clutch transmission for its new M3 coupe by revealing full details of its so-called M DCT with Drivelogic.

Developed by Getrag for BMW M GmbH, the seven-speed dual-clutch gearbox is effectively BMW’s answer to Volkswagen’s recently revealed second-generation seven-speed DSG transmission, and will take up where the previous-generation M3’s Sequential M Gearbox left off.

Apart from becoming an alternative to the conventional manual M3 coupe, sedan and newly revealed convertible later in 2008, the automated manual transmission will replace SMG for BMW’s M5 and should also filter down to other 3 and 5 Series models.

Offering 11 driver-selectable electronic shift programs (five in the fully automatic mode and six in manual mode), BMW claims the M3 with M-DCT is 0.2 seconds quicker to 100km./h than the M3 manual, at 4.6 seconds, while returning average fuel consumption of 11.9L/100 km.

Operated via the centre console shifter or the solid aluminium steering wheel paddles (right side for upshifts, left side for downshifts), each of the M-DCT’s two oil-cooled wet clutches activate its own set of ratios – one for first, third, fifth, seventh and reverse gears, the other for second, fourth and sixth gears.

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