A BMW official has announced the Bavarian marque isn't working on adding more gears to its automatic transmissions.

A BMW official has announced the Bavarian marque isn't working on adding more gears to its automatic transmissions.

BMW small and midsize cars chief Klaus Frolich told Auto Express there's no need for a nine-speed let alone a ten speed automatic transmission because the benefits are "almost zero percent." In addition, a gearbox with more gears adds complexity, weight and increases costs so there's really no need for more than eight gears. He added the efficiency difference between a six- and eight-speed automatic is 7-8 percent, but additional gears would not further increase this percentage.

Frolich also said the manual gearbox will live on in standard models as well as in M cars. The company is offering a manual transmission in the US-spec M5, even though "the development costs are huge" and only around 10 percent of M buyers spec their car with a manual gearbox.

On a side note, Audi CEO Rupert Stadler recently said three-cylinder engines will become standard business in bigger cars within the next ten years, but Frolich is not sure this will occur that fast but he does agree it will happen, although only when the buyers will be ready.

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