How Does the Porsche PDK Transmission Work?

Front seats and dashboard in cabin of Porsche 911 Carrera

In the 1980s, Porsche was looking for more ways to dominate motorsports. Their big break was the now-legendary Porsche Doppelkupplungsgetriebe (PDK) transmission. While it seems like a mouth-full, it translates directly to “Porsche double-clutch transmission.” So, what is the PDK transmission and what makes it so unique? Essentially, this famous Porsche transmission operates much like two manual gearboxes in tandem. It features hydraulically actuated wet clutch packs to help trigger lightning-fast gear changes. Learn more with our service team at Rusnak/Pasadena!

How the PDK Transmission Works

The 7-speed Porsche Doppelkupplungsgetriebe PDK is not an automatic transmission, contrary to what some may believe. While automatic transmissions use a torque converter for gear changes, PDK transmissions use human input with paddle shifters to trigger gear changes. It works much like two manual transmissions in tandem–one set for odd gears, and one set for even.

When you’re in an odd gear, the clutch packs engage the even gears, allowing them to spin freely, as if they were in neutral in a manual transmission. This means they are always ready to be selected at a moment’s notice. In fact, gear changes with the Porsche PDK are so quick, they are nearly imperceptible–just a few milliseconds, to be exact.

Porsche PDK vs. Manual

Compared to manual transmissions, the Porsche PDK delivers a faster acceleration and instantaneous response to help you eke out the fastest lap times on Los Angeles track days. The PDK transmission was originally developed for racing, but it also offers many more advantages as well. There’s no clutch to engage, making it easier to use during day-to-day drives, and it even offers an automatic mode. Other advantages include:

  • Quickest available acceleration
  • Fast gear changes with no powerband interruption
  • Lower fuel consumption
  • Enhanced comfort overall
  • Lighter weight

Which Porsche Vehicles Offer the PDK?

What Porsche models use the Porsche PDK transmission? Take a look at the models that use this incredible motorsports-derived transmission below:

Try Out the Porsche PDK Transmission Near Los Angeles!

Are you still left wondering, “what is a PDK transmission?” Our experts are standing by to answer any questions you may have about Porsche specs, performance, and features. Contact us online, or give us a call at (626) 376-4504, and we’ll be sure to answer any questions you may have to your satisfaction. We’d also be glad to help you compare the Macan vs. Audi Q5 when you want to learn more. We’d also love to help you learn how to reduce interest costs by paying your loan early, find out which Porsche models have a manual transmission, about Porsche oil change services, and more.

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