Designed to offer the best of both manual and automatic worlds, the Selespeed robotized manual transmission by Alfa Romeo wasn’t as perfect as it could have been. The Magneti Marelli developed gearbox, which made its debut in the Alfa 156 back in 1999, is clunky when left in D and requires some footwork for seamless progress in manual, although it can be quite fun in the right mood. VW’s introduction of the double-clutch DSG left Selespeed with nowhere to hide.

Well, Alfa Romeo has finally pensioned off the Selespeed, replacing it with a 6-speed dry twin clutch gearbox called the TCT. The compact MiTo will be the first to get TCT, which will be partnered with the 1.4 TB MultiAir 135 bhp petrol engine with Start&Stop. Now available in RHD in the UK, the TCT MiTo does 13.7 km/l over an urban cycle, 128 g/km of CO2 and 8.2 seconds from 0-100 km/h, compared to the manual’s 13.5 km/l, 129 g/km and 8.4 seconds.

Developed by Fiat Powertrain Technologies, TCT can modify the speed of gear shift, manage torque delivery (on low grip roads for instance), operate completely automatically or as a manual sequential gearbox, and adopt a usage profile which focuses on reducing fuel consumption.

The TCT is also a compact unit, and more efficient because it’s of the dry type, which means that the clutches aren’t bathed in oil, which introduce viscous friction. The 7-speed DSG on the VW Polo and Golf TSI are also dry clutch ‘boxes, and they’re typically suited to lower torque applications.