Smart Car of America Forum banner

1 - 12 of 12 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
6 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
I dont know what pansy programmed the transmission in our cars, I learned to drive on a manual transmission and never even owned a automatic till i was 30. So by extension i drive my dirty snowball in manual mode. I do tend to ignore that stupid up arrow on occasion, while i wont win a drag race against anything other than a honda fit, it still drives me nuts they think 2nd should shift out at 20 instead of 35.

question is as long as i take care of the engine and transmission with proper maintenance, am i gonna kill anything using my own shift points (which are not redline by any measure, just higher than the TCU wants to make them.)
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
11,309 Posts
There are quite a few owners that only use the manual mode and they have not had any problems.

The problem with programming a transmission is covering what everyone wants or needs and keeping everyone happy. higher shift points and the ride gets rough and affects MPG. Lower shift points and performance suffers. flat terrain vs hilly terrain, traffic vs wide open roads.. the variations are endless. I added the pedal mapping software to my cruise and have been satisfied with the car's performance in auto mode. Do what makes you happy and enjoy the drive!!
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
17,480 Posts
I wouldn't say the transmission was programmed by a type of flowering plant, rather it was programmed in an attempt to satisfy America's desire to have all tiny cars get 50+ mpg.

I exclusively use Manual Mode. In all of the 147k my 451 has traveled, less than a thousand of them were in Auto Mode. Manual Mode is absolutely necessary for towing heavy trailers, too. You'll be fine. :)
 

·
King of Smart Gadgetry
Joined
·
1,075 Posts
There's alot going on to make your Smart shift it's own gears, even when you are on manual mode. They programmed it to get to 5th ASAP and that lugs the engine and promotes burned valves. Whenever the arrow on the dash is flashing at you to "shift" it just means that you passed the rpm that the computer would have shifted for you had you been in automatic mode. I wish the dash readout showed what gear the tranny is in even in automatic mode. You can change the factory shift points if you could find someone to remap your ECU. Many of us on the forum swear by the old saying :drive it like you stole it" and to some extent that is true. You're not dealing with enough horsepower to hurt anythng and they have the redline low enough the engine will run forever....well almost. DCO
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
17,480 Posts
Manual Mode should have gear indication. Mine does and IIRC 2008s should have them, too. :eek:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,595 Posts
With my 451 I used manual mode quite often for reasons stated previously. A well designed small engine should not be harmed by using more RPMs in your daily driving. My 453 doesn’t have paddle shifters and I really don’t miss them. I do use the rocker switch on the console to switch to “Sport” mode if I want the transmission to downshift sooner than it would in “Economy” mode. The motor in the 453 loves to rev!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
935 Posts
There's alot going on to make your Smart shift it's own gears, even when you are on manual mode. They programmed it to get to 5th ASAP and that lugs the engine and promotes burned valves. Whenever the arrow on the dash is flashing at you to "shift" it just means that you passed the rpm that the computer would have shifted for you had you been in automatic mode. I wish the dash readout showed what gear the tranny is in even in automatic mode. You can change the factory shift points if you could find someone to remap your ECU. Many of us on the forum swear by the old saying :drive it like you stole it" and to some extent that is true. You're not dealing with enough horsepower to hurt anythng and they have the redline low enough the engine will run forever....well almost. DCO
Thanks DCO, While I Do Not drive it like I stole it, I do drive my smart in manual mode most of the time.
I make my shift points around 3500 rpm, which is quite a bit higher than in "Auto-Shift" mode
Using my ELM 327 wireless OBDll reader and Torque Pro App I am more aware of Engine RPM's VS Engine Load so as not to "LUG" the engine.
I prefer to keep engine load between 50% - 80% and 3400 to 4000 for the RPM's which seems to be the engines sweet spot.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
29,034 Posts
As discussed a number of years ago, the computer will not let the engine over rev - no matter how hard you try. :wink:
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
17,480 Posts
I generally shift at 3k rpm for normal driving conditions, though I often redline it when I'm feeling angsty (yay, hormones!)

For towing, I shift at 4.5-5k so the car's always in the power when it reaches the next gear. This seems to near perfectly emulate the tow mode of the Ford Expedition that I used as a baseline for my smart towing project.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
9,054 Posts
..too many times past 6500 at shift point...
...you'll know when it no longer does that....

Jetfuel..stay well my friend...
 
1 - 12 of 12 Posts
Top