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Hi everyone, my husband & I just bought a used 2008 Passion ForTwo and we love it. However, we noticed that it shifts a little funny (it hesitates between gears). The other day at Starbucks one of the baristas (who also owns the same model car) told us that he took his in to the dealer and they did some sort of update to the computer that fixed the problem. Has anyone heard of this? Is there a service bulletin on it?

Also, I was wondering about the shifting on the steering wheel. Would it shift smoother if we were to shift it manually as opposed to letting the computer do it? Does this cause more wear on the tranny? I would prefer manually shifting because it's more fun than just setting it on auto, however my husband is concerned that this may not be a good idea all the time.
 

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GO FOR IT!!! many people in here only drive in the manual mode. I have been told it is a lot of fun. (I have a Pure, which doesn't have the paddle shifters) The computer will not let you do anything to damage the transmission.

If you are in Drive, move one of the shifters. If it goes into manual mode, you already have the update. Not really a service buliten but it does smoothen out things a bit. There are also some other updates that go with the software and should probably be performed as well. Nothing major. Check with the dealer and they can check by VIN if it has been done.

The trans shifting is a little different and takes a little getting used to. You will learn to let up a bit just before it shifts and it helps smoothen it out. It IS a manual transmission complete with a clutch. No clutch pedal as the computer does all that stuff. Have fun!!
 

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Hello and welcome to the forum! I'm also an '08 owner since Sep '08. There was a transmission software and battery upgrade campaign for the 2008s called "2.0". It fixed a couple bugs in the transmission software and smoothed out the shifts a little. You can tell whether your car has this upgrade by driving in auto mode "D" and then tapping one of the paddles. If the car automatically switches into manual mode and displays the gear # on the dash, you've got the 2.0 software. Prior to 2.0, you had to put the stick in manual mode to shift with the paddles.

As far as driving in manual vs auto mode, it makes no difference - just personal preference. I drive in manual mode 99% of the time and am over 51K miles with no issues. Others drive in auto mode with good results too. Actually, in my case, manual mode has less wear. I live in a hilly area (WV) and the car is always upshifting and downshifting because of the terrain in auto mode. However, I know when the car should hold gears for climbing the next hill and not upshift, etc.

Please do remember that the car has a manual transmission under the covers. It has a clutch plate and a 5 speed gearbox, like any other manual transmission. However, a computer runs the clutch for you, engaging/disengaging as needed for either auto or manual mode. That's why there is a pause when shifting, the computer has to disengage the clutch, change gears, and re-engage the clutch.

I feel that I can shift smoother in manual mode than the car does in auto and I prefer the control, so that's why I run manual most of the time - plus it's more fun! :)

Check out my smart transmission shifting video on YouTube to see an example of both types of shifting under different types of acceleration, plus skip gear changes, etc. Also, see my 2 year ownership documentary video for some of the places my '08 has been and things we've done!

If you're interested in tracking and sharing your fuel mileage, we can always use a few more smarts on Fuelly.com.

 

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Thanks to both of you. I believe it has had the update because it automatically shifts into "manual mode" by pulling the paddles. I'm an old diehard-stickshift-sorta-girl (from my SCCA days...). Hubby prefers auto mode. Glad to hear I can shift away to my heart's content.

Love this site!
 

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Thanks to both of you. I believe it has had the update because it automatically shifts into "manual mode" by pulling the paddles. I'm an old diehard-stickshift-sorta-girl (from my SCCA days...). Hubby prefers auto mode. Glad to hear I can shift away to my heart's content.

Love this site!
You'll fit right in here! :) Once you get the hang of it, it can be a blast to drive with, um, spirit in the twisties! You might consider upgrading the front wheels/tires to equal the rears. It transforms the handling and improves the ride, plus gives you the ability to rotate tires.

Here's a little autocross and drag racing video (at 1:37 in the video) from a recent Orlando event...
 

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jujurama,

tell your hubby not to be too timid with the gas pedal in auto mode - it is a lot smoother if you step on it a bit rather than trying to take off slowly. Experiment a bit and you will see what I mean...
 

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If you think it's shifting particularly rough, you might try reteaching the gearbox. To do that, just turn the key to on (but don't start it up), hold the brake pedal, and run it slowly through all the gearshift positions: P -> R -> N -> D -> M -> + -> - -> D -> N -> R -> P, giving it enough time to shift between each change.

Another thing to try is oiling the clutch actuator. It can sometimes cause issues if it's not greased properly. There's a great how-to video on that around here somewhere, but I don't know where to look and am just feeling lazy at the moment... :eek:

These may or may not improve matters. If they do, great. If they don't, at least you can rest assured that your situation is normal. I think you'll find it's pretty easy to get used to. :wink:
 

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Thanks to both of you. I believe it has had the update because it automatically shifts into "manual mode" by pulling the paddles. I'm an old diehard-stickshift-sorta-girl (from my SCCA days...). Hubby prefers auto mode. Glad to hear I can shift away to my heart's content.

Love this site!
Ah, another SCCA member!! I wonder how many on this board even knows what FUN those letters spell. Been with Central Florida Region since the late 60's. :)
 

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You can tell whether your car has this upgrade by driving in auto mode "D" and then tapping one of the paddles. If the car automatically switches into manual mode and displays the gear # on the dash, you've got the 2.0 software. Prior to 2.0, you had to put the stick in manual mode to shift with the paddles.
I recently bought my 2008 Passion (two months ago), and took it to the SC to get the upgrade. Waited all day for them to complete. But I don't have the above mentioned actions (when in D and tapping one of the paddles...). Does that mean I did not get the service I was supposed to? Does everyone with the "2.0 upgrade" have this auto-to-manual option? The only way I can change gears manually is by moving the shifter over first.

 

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Hi everyone, my husband & I just bought a used 2008 Passion ForTwo and we love it. However, we noticed that it shifts a little funny (it hesitates between gears). The other day at Starbucks one of the baristas (who also owns the same model car) told us that he took his in to the dealer and they did some sort of update to the computer that fixed the problem. Has anyone heard of this? Is there a service bulletin on it?

Also, I was wondering about the shifting on the steering wheel. Would it shift smoother if we were to shift it manually as opposed to letting the computer do it? Does this cause more wear on the tranny? I would prefer manually shifting because it's more fun than just setting it on auto, however my husband is concerned that this may not be a good idea all the time.

If yours is like my 2009 the shifter is reprogramable. Turn the key to position 2, don't start, within ten sec press the gas pedal all the way down wait a few seconds and turn the key off. Wait two minutes before you drive. I will learn from your driving habits when to shift.
 

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If yours is like my 2009 the shifter is reprogramable. Turn the key to position 2, don't start, within ten sec press the gas pedal all the way down wait a few seconds and turn the key off. Wait two minutes before you drive. I will learn from your driving habits when to shift.
Where did you find this information? :)
 
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