Are “Lifetime Fill” Automatic Transmissions Coming to Corvettes?
GM recently announced that they’ll be equipping the new 2017 Malibu with a brand new “Hydra-Matic 9T50” 9-speed traditional torque converter automatic transaxle. There are myriad benefits to this new transmission for Malibu buyers, chiefly an increase in fuel economy. However, buried at the bottom of the press release are an interesting couple of sentences: “The 9T50 is filled with DEXRON®-VI fluid that does not require changing under normal driving conditions. It was developed for a more consistent viscosity profile, consistent shift performance in extreme conditions, and less degradation over time.” I wonder what that could mean for future GM products, especially the Corvette.
DEXRON VI fluid has been used by GM in some of their automatics since 2006. The formulation of this fluid has a higher shear rate, as well as a lower and more-stable viscosity than the outgoing DEXRON III. That allows it to last much longer. In fact, the current Corvette 8-speed automatic is filled with “Dex 6 HP,” which is a development of the same formula. According to GM’s service manual for the C7 Corvette, transmission fluid changes should be done every 45,000 miles or every three years, whichever comes first.
The question I pose to you, dear members, is this: will we soon see the day when Corvettes will be fitted with a so-called Factory Fill automatic transmission fluid? We know that it is a very small percentage of car owners that actually follow their factory-recommended service intervals, but perhaps a higher percentage of owners do so when the car in question is a Corvette; so should GM consider doing such a thing? Would you prefer to have a lifetime fill in your Corvette, or would you prefer to continue servicing your transmission every 45,000 miles or three years? Let us know, we’d love to hear from you.
Chime in with your thoughts on the forum. >>