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Downshifting on a CVT

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Old 07-12-2018, 09:26 AM
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Downshifting on a CVT

Is downshifting from higher to lower speeds is bad for the CVT? Sometimes when im on the highway, i save myself from burning my brake at high speeds by going trip-tronic and downshifting to lower speeds when turning or making an exit.
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Old 07-12-2018, 10:09 AM
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Originally Posted by rablaze93 View Post
Is downshifting from higher to lower speeds is bad for the CVT? Sometimes when im on the highway, i save myself from burning my brake at high speeds by going trip-tronic and downshifting to lower speeds when turning or making an exit.
You are just selecting and forcing a pre-determined ratio in order to use engine braking. I don't think it will harm your CVT.

That said, unless you are riding your brakes you are not going to burn your brakes.
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Old 07-12-2018, 10:57 AM
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You're fine to downshift even with a CVT. Don't overcompensate and drop it too low, but that said it's likely managed by the computer that you can't do catastrophic shifts, as it's all drive by wire, so if the computer says no to a downshift to 2 while doing 75, then it will obey the computer and not your input. But again, I wouldn't push that envelop either.
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Old 07-12-2018, 03:18 PM
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Its also really fun to downshift into turns rather than braking and thanks guys! I really appreciate the insight. Also I was wondering if downshifting consumes more gas? I had this car for about 2 years now and I'm just starting to use the trip-tronic of this car to make the drive more fun. Any pointers and know-hows that I should take note of?
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Old 07-12-2018, 09:02 PM
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Originally Posted by rablaze93 View Post
Its also really fun to downshift into turns rather than braking and thanks guys! I really appreciate the insight. Also I was wondering if downshifting consumes more gas? I had this car for about 2 years now and I'm just starting to use the trip-tronic of this car to make the drive more fun. Any pointers and know-hows that I should take note of?

Fuel efficiency is normally at its best when the tranny is in highest gear (which gives lowest RPMS for the engine). That is still true for the CVT, although it does not have 'true' gears. But I would not think that sometimes using the tranny to help with braking would have a measurable effect on fuel efficiency. Of course frequent or constant such use might have a measurable effect on MPG, just as it would if shifting frequently to a lower gear in any car.
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Old 07-13-2018, 08:53 AM
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It was explained to me once better then I'm about to try to paraphrase it now, but the bottom line is, no, downshifting doesn't actually use more gas during engine braking. The fact that the wheels are perpetuating the engine rotation, the ECU will actually turn down or off fuel injections to some degree. So as long as you're downshifting without a foot on the pedal, and not downshifting to accelerate, you're not using much gas at all, perhaps even less then if you put the car in Neutral and coasted, as then the engine would need fuel to idle. Again, I'm paraphrasing, but that's the essential gist if it.
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Old 07-13-2018, 09:53 AM
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Originally Posted by rablaze93 View Post
Its also really fun to downshift into turns rather than braking and thanks guys! I really appreciate the insight. Also I was wondering if downshifting consumes more gas? I had this car for about 2 years now and I'm just starting to use the trip-tronic of this car to make the drive more fun. Any pointers and know-hows that I should take note of?
Your car will actually use less fuel during engine braking, as explained by Jason in this video:
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Old 07-13-2018, 10:17 AM
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Brake pads are way cheaper than transmissions. ;-)
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Old 07-13-2018, 10:42 AM
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Originally Posted by gizzsdad View Post
Brake pads are way cheaper than transmissions. ;-)
Brake pads can't outperform the engine braking. The car by itself already uses engine braking...
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Old 07-13-2018, 12:47 PM
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Originally Posted by MadMax07SL View Post
Brake pads can't outperform the engine braking. The car by itself already uses engine braking...
what!?
so when the knucklehead using his cell phone pulls out in front of me I should downshift rather than brake?
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Old 07-14-2018, 10:33 AM
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Originally Posted by Mason Hatcher View Post
what!?
so when the knucklehead using his cell phone pulls out in front of me I should downshift rather than brake?
This is the stupidest thing I've ever read
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Old 07-14-2018, 11:47 AM
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Originally Posted by Mason Hatcher View Post
what!?
so when the knucklehead using his cell phone pulls out in front of me I should downshift rather than brake?
Funny and clever. I was just thinking the same thing.
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Old 07-14-2018, 12:18 PM
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Originally Posted by compyelc4 View Post
Funny and clever. I was just thinking the same thing.
By that logic, when you're going into a curve the only logical thing to do is stand as tall as you can on the brake pedal until you've slowed down enough to get through the curve safely. Its almost like different driving situations require different driver responses.
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Old 07-14-2018, 01:32 PM
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Originally Posted by lda6339 View Post
By that logic, when you're going into a curve the only logical thing to do is stand as tall as you can on the brake pedal until you've slowed down enough to get through the curve safely. Its almost like different driving situations require different driver responses.
No, the logic is not the same. The guy wrote that engine braking is stronger than brakes. It's not. In your scenario, the brakes will bleed speed faster and more effectively than the engine.
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Old 07-14-2018, 01:34 PM
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Originally Posted by lda6339 View Post
This is the stupidest thing I've ever read
You should read more, and improve your comprehension.

Brake pads can't outperform the engine braking.
I won't be rude and call that stupid, but it is certainly not correct.
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Old 07-14-2018, 02:33 PM
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Originally Posted by Mason Hatcher View Post
You should read more, and improve your comprehension.



I won't be rude and call that stupid, but it is certainly not correct.
pass the popcorn please :-)
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Old 07-14-2018, 07:05 PM
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Originally Posted by Mason Hatcher View Post
You should read more, and improve your comprehension.



I won't be rude and call that stupid, but it is certainly not correct.
*ignores a basic understanding of human syntax*
*scolds me on reading comprehension*
The irony is fantastic
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Old 07-15-2018, 06:11 AM
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Engine breaking is great via downshift. Works great in certain conditions specially in Calgary when itís snowing or in icy conditions or even regular driving. Itís safe and by using common sense of course itís a great way to prolong break pad changing.

I highly recommend using brain power to use this tech.
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Old 07-16-2018, 06:36 AM
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Dude with the "someone pulls out in front of me brake vs. downshift" stupidity...of course if the downshift isn't a capable option use the brake pedal, I thought that was self evident. Point I was making about the engine braking being stronger was in relation to controlling speeds over long durations. Engine braking is a feature of the car, already employed by the manufacture, by using it more emphatically you can avoid using the brakes when *managing speed*. In short, minor deceleration with the engine is both more efficient, and will protect your brakes from heating up in say a downhill decent with many corners. You'll also preserve the life of your brake lights by not flashing them all the time. (Let's see what stupid F'n response that gets)
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Old 07-16-2018, 07:31 AM
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Originally Posted by MadMax07SL View Post
Dude with the "someone pulls out in front of me brake vs. downshift" stupidity...of course if the downshift isn't a capable option use the brake pedal, I thought that was self evident. Point I was making about the engine braking being stronger was in relation to controlling speeds over long durations. Engine braking is a feature of the car, already employed by the manufacture, by using it more emphatically you can avoid using the brakes when *managing speed*. In short, minor deceleration with the engine is both more efficient, and will protect your brakes from heating up in say a downhill decent with many corners. You'll also preserve the life of your brake lights by not flashing them all the time. (Let's see what stupid F'n response that gets)
Explained well enough right here. When I first read the reply with "stupidest comment" in it I, for one, was not sure who that comment was meant for, but it did seem out of order because I took the reply about "... dude pulls out in front of me" comment as comedic, not "stupid". Just my take. Funny how texts can get out of hand when there is no eye contact or facial expression to help get one's point across more effectively. Has happened to me more than once.
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Old 07-16-2018, 10:43 AM
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I mostly downshift going down a hill where there's a speed camera at the bottom. It works perfectly unless I'm going too fast at the top of the hill, or just not paying attention to have the engine slow me down enough to get below the speed limit at the camera.
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Old 07-16-2018, 06:34 PM
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Originally Posted by rablaze93 View Post
Its also really fun to downshift into turns rather than braking and thanks guys! I really appreciate the insight. Also I was wondering if downshifting consumes more gas? I had this car for about 2 years now and I'm just starting to use the trip-tronic of this car to make the drive more fun. Any pointers and know-hows that I should take note of?
I've tried it all on this car and YES when using the tip tronic for downshifts you will consume more fuel. it's simple math, when driving say at 60mph and you decide to downshift your RPM's will go from 1700 rpm's to around 3500rpm's the higher the RPM's the more fuel the vehicle will consume.
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Old 07-16-2018, 09:19 PM
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There is no direct connection between RPM and fuel flow.
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Old 07-16-2018, 09:25 PM
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Originally Posted by Lemonhawk View Post
There is no direct connection between RPM and fuel flow.
agreed I down shift the **** out of this car and I get the same fuel economy, sport or normal. I do have the stillen Intake, no gain in power or fuel subtraction just the very nice sound and really good acceleration.
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Old 07-16-2018, 10:16 PM
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Originally Posted by bones787718 View Post
I've tried it all on this car and YES when using the tip tronic for downshifts you will consume more fuel. it's simple math, when driving say at 60mph and you decide to downshift your RPM's will go from 1700 rpm's to around 3500rpm's the higher the RPM's the more fuel the vehicle will consume.
RPM stands for revolutions per minute, but to what is the revolution part of that acronym referring to? If you think RPM and fuel economy are related it probably isnít what you think it is
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Old 07-17-2018, 08:04 AM
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Originally Posted by bones787718 View Post
I've tried it all on this car and YES when using the tip tronic for downshifts you will consume more fuel. it's simple math, when driving say at 60mph and you decide to downshift your RPM's will go from 1700 rpm's to around 3500rpm's the higher the RPM's the more fuel the vehicle will consume.

That's the thing, if you're foot is on the gas when you downshift you're still supplying fuel...we talked about this above, if you downshift in order to accelerate, then you will use fuel, and likely more fuel then if you were steady in a higher gear; However that is all relative to throttle position, load, momentum, so it's too subjective to make a blanket statement. However if you are using downshift for engine braking, then you are using zero or near zero fuel, as the ECM will cut off fuel injection because the wheels/transmission are providing the perpetual rotation of the motor, and not internal combustion.
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