Jaguar Land Rover is leading the development of an innovative 8-speed transmission that can combine dual-clutch, hybrid and low-range elements all in the one unit.  

The development is being handled by a five-member research group called Transmission Supply Chain Excellence for Next-Generation Dual-Clutch Technologies, abbreviated to Transcend, and is partly funded by British taxpayers.  

The transmission is designed for rear- and all-wheel-drive vehicles with longitudinally-mounted engines, with a particular focus on vehicles designed for off-roading. That’s because it uses a unique ultra-wide ratio spread of 20:1, which is more than double that of conventional 8-speed transmissions.

The transmission is also said to be light, more compact and more efficient than conventional 8-speed transmissions. Jaguar Land Rover claims weight savings of around 44 pounds and as much as 10 percent improvements in fuel economy.

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Jaguar Land Rover Ingenium turbocharged 2.0-liter inline-4 engine

Jaguar Land Rover Ingenium turbocharged 2.0-liter inline-4 engine

While the new transmission may still be several years off, Jaguar Land Rover will be able to improve the efficiency of its vehicles much sooner thanks to the introduction of a new turbocharged 2.0-liter inline-4 engine. It’s part of the automaker’s Ingenium modular engine family which has already spawned a turbocharged 2.0-liter diesel.

No performance numbers have been released but in general Jaguar Land Rover’s Ingenium engines improve power by 25 percent and fuel economy by 15 percent over current units. For reference, the existing turbocharged 2.0-liter inline-4 in the Jaguar XE delivers 240 horsepower and returns an EPA-rated 21 mpg city, 30 highway and 24 combined.

The new engine’s first application could be in the 2018 Land Rover Discovery, which debuts later this month at the 2016 Paris auto show.

Eventually, the Ingenium engine family is expected to spawn inline-6 units.