Ever since its introduction on the Maruti Suzuki Celerio, Automated Manual Transmission (AMT) has become a sought-after technology in the Indian car market. It is a much cheaper option than the proper conventional fully-automatic gearboxes and provides the same fuel efficiency as their manual counterparts.
The technology has caught fancy of not only Maruti but also a lot of other manufacturers. Tata launched Zest AMT on diesel, Maruti capitalized by plonking AMT on their Alto K10, Renault is going to bring it on the XBA and Mahindra has already showcased their Quanto Autoshift. Toyota, on the other hand, has decided not use AMTs in their products.
As per a report on Hindustan Times, Toyota does not consider AMTs to be durable enough to be used in cars. N Raja, company’s Director and Senior Vice President says that AMTs have more movable parts, more than in a traditional automatic, and hence greater are the chances of wear and tear.
Toyota believes that AMTs are prone to breakdown and the technology, in itself, is dated. Therefore, they do not have any intentions of introducing AMT boxes in any of their cars.
According to an earlier report in November 2014, Raja has confirmed that the company is working on automatic versions of their Etios series of cars which will start hitting the markets within 10 months. Considering this latest report, it gets abundantly clear that Etios twins will come with proper and conventional automatic gearboxes and not AMTs!
Toyotas have always been known for their durability (though at the cost of fun and style), are they correct in pointing a finger at AMTs? Are AMTs really prone to breakdown? Since Celerio and others cars are relatively new at this point, we can not comment much! But this needs to be seen in a longer point of time.