Porsche’s PDK Transmission

December 11, 2022
Porsche’s PDK Transmission

What Is Porsches PDK Transmission?

PDK stands for Porsche Doppel Kupplungs getriebe. This is Porsche’s version of a dual-clutch transmission. This system provides the smoothest and fastest shifts of any semi-automatic.

Doppelkupplung translates to “dual clutch” and the PDK automatic transmission is exactly that. It is effectively two manual transmissions inside a larger automatic transmission. Once a gear is engaged on one of the manual transmissions the next gear is preselected on the opposite manual transmission. As the clutch opens for the engaged gear, the next gear closes. This allows for instantaneous gear changes for agile driving. This system shifts faster than most other transmissions and never needs the clutch replaced – ever!

One clutch connects to the reverse, first, third, fifth, and seventh gears, while the other clutch controls second, fourth, and sixth. There is also no clutch pedal attached to the floor. An electronically controlled valve body corrects the clutch as needed. The PDK system is a wet clutch system, meaning it uses oil to lubricate the clutch. This keeps the clutch cool, so it is less likely to burn out.

Porsche’s PDK system has a long history. It can be traced back to the 956-era cars from the 1980s. However, the PDK system wasn’t introduced to the State’s models until 2009. The PDK system took Porsche 20 – 30 years to perfect and place in daily driver models. Some of the models that the PDK system is available in are the; 918 Spyder, 718’s, 911’s, Panamera, Macan, and the Cayenne. Many compare the PDK transmission to a racecar transmission or even better.

The PDK system is very dependable, however, there is some debate on its failure points. As they have aged it is clear some systems present issues over time. Vehicles that aren’t properly maintained or have deferred work, vehicles that are regularly tracked, or high mileage are the main contributors. Most of the time PDK transmissions aren’t repairable, they have to be totally replaced. This is certainly something to factor in if you are thinking about purchasing a Porsche with the PDK transmission system. Our sophisticated service team is available to advise on expected maintenance and overall cost of ownership to service your Porsche.


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