It will be introduced into the 2014 model year Range Rover Evoque, available later this year.

The ZF 9HP transmission is specifically designed for transverse applications, and is one of the most efficient and technically advanced transmissions ever used in a production vehicle.

Increasing the number of gear ratios from six to nine gives significant improvement in fuel economy and a corresponding reduction in CO2 emissions.

Smaller ratio steps give improved response during acceleration, improved shift quality, drive and refinement.

The higher top gear not only reduces fuel consumption, but the lower engine revs improve comfort and reduce noise when cruising at high speed.

The 9HP is extremely robust and perfectly complements the Evoque's rugged all-terrain ability while delivering exceptionally high levels of refinement and efficiency.

The lowest ratio in the 9HP is far lower than the existing six-speed transmission and is specifically designed for off-road use, towing and some more extreme on-road conditions like gradients and altitude, giving the driver a heightened sense of control.

With extremely fast gear changes described by ZF as being "below the threshold of perception", the 9HP is not only highly responsive but versatile, too.

Whereas the existing six-speed transmission makes shifts sequentially, the 9HP has a skip-shift function for much swifter downshifting under rapid deceleration or from greater driver input demands.

The torque converter incorporates a multi-stage damper system for smoother pulling away and improved refinement.

"We are extremely excited about the 9HP, which has been tailored exactly to dovetail with the unique attributes of our vehicles," said John Edwards, Land Rover Global Brand Director

"It will add another layer of performance, refinement and efficiency to the Evoque, further enhancing its world class abilities."