Overview: Ricardo GT transmission

Ricardo’s lightweight GT transmission has spent the last couple of years working hard in Nissan racing cars. Now it’s officially available to buy, and Nissan’s compatriots Toyota and Honda have adopted it for the Japanese Super GT race series.

The Ricardo GT is a six-speed sequential transverse transaxle, designed for use in front-engined, rear-driven GT1 and GT2 competition cars. Its normal off-the-shelf casing is a lightweight non-structural magnesium item, but the gearbox can be delivered in a bespoke casing. A variation on the GT design, intended for longitudinal mounting, is also offered.

Nissan GT-R with Ricardo GT transmission.

The Ricardo transmission has successfully competed — in the GT1 class — in the 2009 Spa-Francorchamps 24-hour race. Its internals are identical to those of the 2008 and 2009 Japanese Super GT Championship-winning cars. Most recently it was used by the British Sumo Power Nissan team in their victory in the Tourist Trophy at Silverstone in early May. This was the first win for the new Nissan car in the 2010 FIA GT1 World Championship.

Despite a modest all-up dry mass of 53kg with its standard casing, the GT transmission has a capacity of 700Nm and over 650PS. (For reference, the Nissan GT-R’s 5552cc engine runs at 600PS and something over 650Nm.) It uses six-speed sequential dog engagement, with a bevel gear input and spur gear final drive. Its gears are 16mm wide, straight-cut and full-form ground; they are manufactured from S156 single-melt case-hardened steel.

Ricardo GT transmission in standard magnesium casing.
Ricardo GT transmission internal components: 1 Input shaft from clutch; 2 Selector barrel; 3 Spur gear final drive wheel; 4 Oil pump; 5 Secondary shaft (layshaft); 6 Primary shaft (mainshaft); 7 Bevel / pinion gear.
Text and design copyright Under the Skin 2010. We recommend Firefox.