Engineering Explained and The Humble Mechanic team are two YouTube channels with the goal of teaching us more about the cars we drive. Today, they get together to break down how Volkswagen's dual-clutch gearbox works. Volkswagen calls it the Direct-Shift Gearbox, or DSG for short. With an engineer and a mechanic as the hosts, we get a deeper dive into the wrenching side of the DSG.
ALSO SEE: How a dual-clutch transmission works
Essentially, the DSG's internals are very much like those of a manual transmission. It consists of a pair of wet multi-plate clutches. These operate a pair of input shafts, and the ascending gears sit on different shafts. This is how a dual-clutch gearbox is able to shift so quickly. When you're in a given gear, the next gear is pre-selected and ready to go when you need it. Our hosts also explain how the shifts can sometimes seem a bit jerky.
The numerous clutch plates sit in an oil bath and keep the whole assembly moving you along. It's both a compact and complex system. Still, with the help of the hosts, it's easy to wrap your head around a dual-clutch gearbox. The pair of output shafts work with a large differential to deliver the power to the wheels. Plus, it comes standard with shift paddles so you can choose when the shifts happen, and, depending on the car it's in, you may get those delightful pops and burps.