This paper proposes a novel solution to the problems that exist in the conventional hill climb searching (HCS) maximum power point tracking (MPPT) algorithm for the wind energy conversion system. The presented solution not only solves the tracking speed versus control efficiency tradeoff problem of HCS but also makes sure that the changing wind conditions do not lead HCS in the wrong direction. It intelligently adapts the variable step size to keep up with the rapid changes in the wind and seizes the perturbation at the maxima to yield 100% control efficiency. For this purpose, a novel peak detection capability has been devised which, in contrast with conventional peak detection, can work robustly under changing wind conditions. The proposed MPPT performs self-tuning to cope with the nonconstant efficiencies of the generator-converter subsystems-a phenomenon quite rarely discussed in research papers so far. In addition, a smart speed-sensorless scheme has been developed to avoid the use of mechanical sensors. The experimental results confirm that the proposed algorithm is remarkably faster and more efficient than the conventional HCS.