DSG gearbox in a Volkswagen

What is DSG?

Have you noticed ‘DSG’ embossed on your gearstick or seen it in one of our vehicle listings and wondered what it means? We take a look at what DSG means and why it’s a great feature for your vehicle.

One question we’re commonly asked here at Miles Continental is ‘what is DSG?’

DSG stands for ‘Direct-Shift Gearbox’ (luckily enough, the German translation has the same initials – Direkt-Schalt Getriebe).

Without getting too technical, this special gearbox is effectively two separate clutches that work together as one unit, without a clutch pedal and with full automatic or semi-manual control.

How do I know if my car has DSG?

Not all Volkswagens and ŠKODAs are fitted with a Direct-Shift Gearbox. To tell if your vehicle has DSG, there’s one very easy test – simply look at the top of your gearstick! If your vehicle has DSG, you’ll see these three initials embossed on the top of the stick (or sometimes on the body of the stick, facing the rear of the vehicle).

If you’re lucky enough to own a Volkswagen or a ŠKODA, there’s a good chance that you see these three initials quite often as DSG was initially licensed to the Volkswagen Group.

What are the advantages of DSG?

When changing gears, traditional gearboxes can slow you down and waste fuel. With DSG, you can experience rapid gear changes delivering a smooth flow of power that can actually help you save fuel (some users of the 7 speed variant have found up to 15% better fuel economy than conventional gearboxes).

With the DSG’s unique set up, you’ll also experience safer driving with the power to get you out of tricky situations.

AutoCar once compared two Volkswagen Golf cars, one without DSG and one with. They found the car with DSG to be a second faster to 60mph, more consistent, more economical and even slightly cleaner in emissions (view their video below).

How does DSG work?

In a 6 speed gearbox, the 1st, 3rd and 5th gears have their own clutch and the 2nd, 4th, and 6th gears have their own clutch. This means that the next gear you’re about to change to is always already engaged, making for “instantaneous, perfect, accurate gear changes” and the “biggest step forward in gearbox technology” (as quoted from Fifth Gear).

DSG provides the ease of an automatic with the agility of a manual.

Find out more

The Volkswagen UK website has a video (in Flash) that shows a demonstration of a DSG vehicle and you can also read more about the technical side of things in this Wikipedia article.

Alternatively, if you’d like to experience a Direct-Shift Gearbox for yourself, contact one of our team todayand arrange a test-drive of one of our DSG-fitted vehicles.

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