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Transmission Quiz
by Staff
A car's transmission enables the engine to provide a wide range of output speeds. Without it, you'd be limited to just one gear. Test your knowledge of both automatic and manual transmissions in this quiz.

A manual transmission is connected to the engine through the:

  • differential
  • belt
  • clutch

What connects the gears to the drive shaft in a manual transmission?

  • layshaft
  • clutch
  • collar

In a manual transmission, how does the collar engage a gear?

  • with magnets
  • with dog teeth
  • with hydraulics

What do manual transmissions in modern passenger cars use to eliminate the need for double-clutching?

  • elite motor oil
  • synchronizers
  • equalizers

What two things do automatic transmissions lack that manual transmissions have?

  • clutch pedal and gears
  • clutch pedal and gear shift
  • clutch pedal and steering wheel

What creates the different gear ratios in an automatic transmission?

  • a series of four gears
  • planetary gearset
  • planetary hydraulics

In most automatic transmissions, which gear produces a 1-1 ratio?

  • second gear
  • third gear
  • fourth gear

What feeds the transmission cooler and torque converter in an automatic transmission?

  • the sump
  • the governor
  • the gear pump

What tells the automatic transmission how fast the car is going?

  • the governor
  • the gear pump
  • the sump

In an automatic transmission, the shift lever hooks up to the:

  • throttle valve
  • vacuum modulator
  • manual valve

CVT stands for:

  • continuously variable transmission
  • compact vehicle transmission
  • connecting vortex turbine

A continuously variable transmission is a type of:

  • transmission for race cars
  • manual transmission
  • automatic transmission

What does a tachometer do?

  • It keeps track of how fast the car has gone.
  • It's a gauge in the dashboard that shows what gear the car is in.
  • It's a gauge in the dashboard that shows the engine’s rpms.

What is the redline?

  • the maximum rpm value above which the engine cannot go without exploding
  • the light that tells passengers to put on their seatbelts
  • a type of oil that makes the transmission faster

How does the redline relate to the transmission?

  • The redline on the tachometer helps the driver know when to shift.
  • The redline tells the driver what gear the car is in.
  • The redline tells the driver when to change the transmission fluid.

What type of modern transmission is generally best for fuel economy?

  • manual
  • CVT
  • automatic

What is the “H” that’s on top of many manual shift knobs?

  • It reminds the driver to "Hold" in the clutch while in neutral.
  • It shows the shift pattern.
  • It tells the driver where to put his or her "Hand."

Why is the CVT so common in hybrid cars?

  • better fuel economy
  • it’s the cheapest
  • it’s powered by hybrid batteries

If you shift a manual transmission into reverse while the car’s going forward, what happens?

  • it goes backwards
  • the clutch pedal falls off
  • nothing except a lot of noise

What happens if a four-wheel drive vehicle is towed?

  • worn-out tires
  • its feelings will get hurt
  • transmission damage

What kind of car usually needs a transmission cooler?

  • all cars
  • hybrid cars
  • tow vehicles

Should a transmission cooler be installed by a mechanic?

  • Yes, it needs a lot of special tools.
  • No, it’s easy to do at home.
  • No, you should buy a car that already has one.

How do you know if your transmission fluid is leaking?

  • It won’t. They’re leak-proof.
  • The car won’t start.
  • There will be a puddle on the ground.

What color is a transmission fluid leak?

  • blue
  • red or brown
  • red or green

When was the CVT first thought up?

  • more than 500 years ago
  • right before 1997, when the first Toyota Prius came out in Japan
  • right before 1996, when the General Motors EV1 came out

What’s the recommended interval to change transmission fluid?

  • never
  • at every oil change
  • every couple of years

Do CVTs actually have a gearbox?

  • No, they have a pulley system.
  • No, the gears are on a grid instead of in a box.
  • Yes.

Why do automatic transmissions sometimes feel slow or sluggish?

  • It’s caused by a bad tachometer.
  • It’s caused by a bad clutch.
  • It’s caused by heavy engine load.

We already established that cars with automatic transmissions do not have a clutch pedal. But do they have a clutch?

  • no
  • yes
  • yes, but only with an aftermarket performance kit

Why do some people believe that manual transmissions are faster or provide better performance?

  • lots of performance cars still have them
  • they are faster
  • they don't wear out as fast