Deshmane, S., Gurav, O., and Sahu, V., "Contribution of the mechanical linkage in gear shift feel of North-South transmission," SAE Int. J. Passeng. Cars - Mech. Syst. 11(1):2018.
Today’s automotive industry is facing cutthroat competition, especially in passenger vehicle business. Manufacturers around the globe are developing innovative and new products keeping focus on end customer; thus customer's opinion and perception about the product has become a factor of prime importance.Customer touch points such as gear shift lever, clutch, brakes, steering etc. are thus gaining more and more importance. Car companies are trying to induce more and more luxuries in these touch points so that they impress customer and create a positive opinion about the product. On the other hand manufacturers are also trying to manage profits. Companies thus need to find the best fit solution for improvising customer touch points with optimized costs.The performance of these touch points is driven by subsystems of mechanical components like mechanical linkage. Quality, functioning and durability of these mechanical component subsystems play a significant role in performance of touch points like gear shift lever.During development of 6-Speed North-South transmission, we came across some facts indicating the relation between the performance of mechanical shifting linkage system and gear shift feel of the car. Mechanical linkage stiffness, free play and efficiency are the parameters playing a vital role in its functioning and thereby gear shift feel.In this paper a case study is discussed mentioning work related to improvement in the mechanical linkage for improving gear shift feel. The paper explains learning's about mechanical linkage kinematics, force calculations and transformations, mechanism models we worked on, the interrelations between linkage parameters and how these help to improvise gear shift feel.Discussion is made on noise, vibrations, shift lever rattle cause and effects, the role of mechanical linkage in all these. Optimization of linkage stiffness, weight, inertia and angles between links with help of Creo-simulation model is described and the conclusion is drawn in the end.