Driving into the Future: The Latest Improvements in Subaru’s CVT Transmission Technology

Subaru is known for its reliable and safe car models, and their Continuously Variable Transmissions (CVT) have become increasingly popular in recent years. But have Subaru’s CVT transmissions improved over the years? In this article, we will explore the history of Subaru’s CVT transmissions, their latest technology innovations, and what advantages and disadvantages they offer.

History of Subaru’s CVT Transmissions

Subaru first introduced their CVT transmissions in the early 1990s, initially used in their small Japanese-market vehicles. Since then, Subaru’s CVT transmission technology has undergone several improvements to meet the needs and preferences of their global customers.

One of the most notable changes in Subaru’s CVT transmissions is the Lineartronic technology introduced in 2010. This version offered the right balance of efficiency and smooth performance that Subaru customers wanted. Subaru further enhanced this technology with the introduction of a new generation of CVT transmission in 2014.

Overview of Subaru’s Latest CVT Transmission Technology

Subaru’s latest CVT transmission is a highly sophisticated system that provides a smooth and refined driving experience. The transmission works by using a metal chain instead of a traditional belt to maintain a smoother engine speed. The metal chain has a wider gear ratio range, which allows for better fuel efficiency and smoother performance.

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Subaru’s CVT transmission also features an adaptive control system, which is constantly adjusting to provide the best possible power delivery under different driving conditions. The system monitors the driving conditions and adapts the transmission’s responsiveness accordingly.

Comparison with Earlier Generations of Subaru’s CVT Transmissions

Compared to earlier generations, Subaru’s latest CVT transmissions offer significant improvements in terms of efficiency, noise reduction, and overall driving experience. The latest transmission provides more responsive, quicker and smoother acceleration than earlier versions. The latest CVT transmission also produces less noise when accelerating, providing a quieter ride.

Another significant improvement in Subaru’s latest CVT transmission is its fuel efficiency. The Lineartronic transmission offers a class-leading fuel economy, thanks to its advanced design and wider gear ratio range. This translates to lower emissions and significant savings in fuel costs.

Advantages and Disadvantages of Subaru’s CVT Transmissions

As with any car transmission system, there are advantages and disadvantages to Subaru’s CVT transmissions. One of the main advantages is that they can offer better fuel efficiency, which is a critical factor for many buyers, especially when gas prices are high. Additionally, CVT transmissions can offer a smoother and more responsive driving experience due to the absence of gear-shifting delays.

However, there are some disadvantages as well. The main one is that CVT transmissions are more complex than traditional automatic or manual transmissions, which can lead to higher repair costs if something goes wrong. Additionally, some drivers may prefer the feeling of shifting gears, which CVT transmissions do not provide.

New Innovations and Improvements in Subaru’s CVT Transmissions

Subaru continues to invest in R&D to improve their CVT transmissions, with each new version featuring advanced technology that takes the driving experience to the next level. One of the latest innovations is the introduction of the driver-selectable modes, which allow the driver to choose how the transmission responds to different driving conditions better.

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Another area where Subaru is focusing on improvement is the durability and reliability of their CVT transmissions. The company has addressed some of the issues that earlier versions had, such as overheating, and is committed to providing more robust and reliable transmissions.


What does a CVT transmission mean?

CVT stands for Continuous Variable Transmission, which is a type of automatic transmission. Unlike traditional automatic transmissions that have a fixed number of gears, CVT transmissions use a pulley system to smoothly adjust the gear ratio in response to changes in driving conditions.

How does Subaru’s CVT transmission work?

Subaru’s CVT transmission uses metal chain instead of a traditional belt to maintain a smoother engine speed. The metal chain has a wider gear ratio range, which allows for better fuel efficiency and smoother performance. The transmission also features an adaptive control system, which adapts the transmission responsiveness according to driving conditions.

Is Subaru’s CVT transmission reliable?

Subaru’s latest CVT transmission is designed to be durable and reliable, with the company addressing some of the issues that earlier versions of CVT transmissions had. However, as with any car transmission system, proper maintenance and care are critical to the longevity and reliability of the transmission.


Subaru’s latest CVT transmission technology is a significant improvement over earlier generations, offering smoother performance, better fuel efficiency, and a more enjoyable overall driving experience. Although there may be some disadvantages, such as higher repair costs, the benefits of better fuel efficiency and smoother acceleration make Subaru’s CVT transmissions an attractive option for many car buyers. As Subaru continues to invest in R&D, we can expect even more impressive innovations and improvements in their CVT transmission technology in the future.

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Billy Covington

With a passion for all things automotive, Billy is our go-to expert on Subaru performance upgrades and modifications. He's been featured in several car magazines and blogs, and his extensive knowledge and expertise make him a valuable member of our team. When he's not working on cars, he enjoys playing guitar and writing music.

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