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More gears often equals more efficiency, so we're glad to see Hyundai release its own 6-speed automatic gearbox. Most manufacturers purchase ready-made auto boxes from specialist companies, but Hyundai's gone the route less traveled. The company joins Toyota, Ford and General Motors as the only manufacturers that actually designed and built their own six-speeders. Compared to the outgoing 5-speed box, the new unit is 26 pounds lighter and uses 62 fewer parts, despite adding that extra ratio up t

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When Automobile got their paws on a six-speed manual version of the M5, they were none too pleased that BMW's engineers wouldn't allow drivers to fully disable the traction control. At the time, we assumed that BMW's legal boffins pictured overly enthusiastic Americans, stomping the go pedal and promptly winding up in a ditch.

According to new information complied by the research firm CSM Worldwide; six-speed automatics will be the norm for domestic manufactures by 2015. Currently, the standard four-speed automatic has dominated the marketplace for the past several years, but as fuel efficiency becomes more of a factor in consumer purchases, the addition of two more gears will become a necessity to remain competitive.

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