How Does The Volvo Automatic Transmission System Work?

Much has been said and written about the new Volvo automatic transmission system. It popularity continues to grow solely because of its uniqueness, safety and efficiency. This should not come as a surprise given the fact that Volvo embraces innovation more than her competitors. So what exactly makes Volvo automatic transmission system special? How does it even work in the first place? Is it safe? Read on to learn more.

The Geatronic System

You will probably hear the term ‘geatronic’ or come across it many times anytime you want to broaden your knowledge on Volvo automatic transmission systems. The term refers to Volvo’s ‘manumatic’ transmission system which closely resembles Porsche’s Tiptronic transmission as far as design, functionality and concept are concerned. The manumatic transmission comes in 4, 5,6 and 8 speed models and it is entirely controlled by microprocessor.

The Microprocessor

Almost everything is automated in a Volvo automatic transmission system. This is made possible by a high tech Engine Control Unit fitted with a microprocessor designed to automatically execute functions like shifting gears. Note that your car does not have one, but many microprocessors, which come in handy when controlling everything from the engine, central heating, turning signals, fans and even the central heating system. For Volvo, the microprocessor allows automatic synchronization of angular speeds of input and output power stream. It also makes it easy for the driver to shift gears without switching off the clutch.

Fuel Consumption

It is hard to talk of Volvo’s automatic transmission system without mentioning a thing or two about fuel consumption. Again, the Engine Control Unit comes into the picture here. Most Volvo models use what experts refer to as the closed loop control which is a control scheme designed to monitor variants like outputs of the engine and transmission systems so as to control fuel input and manage emissions.  ECU models today are extremely advanced. It gathers data from several sensors fitted on the car. This means Volvo’s ECU knows everything from the amount of oxygen in the exhaust to the coolant temperature and of course, the amount of fuel left in the gas tank. The ECU uses this data to perform millions of calculations per second. The ECU can actually determine how long your car’s fuel injector should remain open.

Other Specifications

Geartronic is offered on all modern Volvo models with engine displacements of at least 2.0 litres or more. It is also important to note that Volvo geatronic transmission systems are designed and manufactured in Japan. They require use of the automatic transmission fluid which should meet JWS 3309 specifications.


Volvo boasts of advanced car diagnostics as is evident in features that come along with the systems explained above. This means that modern Volvo models call for a different kind of maintenance from older models. You have no choice but to find Volvo experts. This should not be a problem as there are already several licensed and accredited Volvo automotive experts ranging from mechanics to wiring and even stereo experts. Be sure to also take your car for servicing at least once a month.