2015 Volkswagen GTI: Still the Best Automatic Transmission
February 26, 2015
Although some members of our staff would like our 2015 Volkswagen Golf GTI better if it had a manual transmission, I'm fine with its automatic. That's because Volkswagen's Direct Shift Gearbox is one of, if not the best, automatics on the market.
Whether it's in the standard "Drive" mode or the more aggressive "Sport" mode, it delivers crisp, well-timed shifts that make the four-cylinder engine feel all the more powerful.
Its use of dual clutches to make the transitions from gear to gear gives it a slightly different shift feel compared to normal transmissions. The changes are ultra-quick and so smooth you almost don't notice them sometimes.
I'm on the fence whether I like the standard mode or the sport setting better. There are times when the aggressiveness of the sport setting holds a gear just a bit too long. Unlike most systems, it's truly made for serious canyon carving, not just driving fast in traffic. Or maybe it's just because the normal shift mode is so good? Either way, it's a solid setup that I would gladly take over the manual shifter any day.
Ed Hellwig, Executive Editor@ 6,278 miles