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CVT

Discussion in 'Cars & Automotive' started by YankeeRebel, Jul 20, 2018.

  1. YankeeRebel

    YankeeRebel Well-Known Member

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    These transmissions remind me a lot of CDs when the first came out, yes I'm that old. A lot of people hated CDs and a lot of people loved them. CVTs are very similar IMO when the first came out I hated them test drove a few and before I bought my 2014 Avalon I test drove a few and they felt odd to me. The wife took a job which requires her to drive 100 miles a day do I bought her a 2017 Civic with CVT, it drives different from when they first come out. It's funny when we used to buy cars like Caddy's, Avalons, Lexus, etc we love smooth shifting transmissions, people would state " Man you can hardly feel that car shift gears " well that is what CVTs do. I test drove a Subaru Outback last night came with a CVT car rode great as does the Civic.

    Now I agree with a lot of people that would not want a CVT for towing, or in a muscle car etc. But for a highway car or road trip car which the Outback will be I really can't see an issue with them. Once they hit cruising speed you cannot tell a difference. And while they lack the knock down gear for passing the Outback accelerated incredibly well as cruising speed. Point being I think it all depends on your use of the vehicle.

    I am curious as to what repairs my be if needed.
     



  2. Cobrabit

    Cobrabit Resident Polymath

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    I never had an issue in the 7 years I owned an Altima so I can't speak to the maintenance costs.

    I disagree with the racing and towing though. If controlled properly, a CVT will keep the engine at peak power, which is exactly what you want. Heck, Formula One even banned it back in the early '90s before it even hit the track, as it would've been such a huge advantage over the field.

    We don't see them in muscle cars mainly because people prefer the sound of an engine going through the revs and they do take some of the fun away. A CVT would blow away a manual, automatic, or dual clutch transmission in performance, but would also cause a lot of exhaust drone which today's exhausts could be tuned to minimize that though.
     
  3. YankeeRebel

    YankeeRebel Well-Known Member

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    Im not sure I agree with this.
     
  4. YankeeRebel

    YankeeRebel Well-Known Member

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    EDIT FAIL
     
  5. Indrid Cold

    Indrid Cold Member In Black

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    I'm happy with the way the CVT in my Forester XT performs, but Subaru has extended the warranties on their CVTs to 100,000 miles because they were having some issues. I ended up having some major tranny work done around 80k, things started feeling a little weird in reverse and then it started throwing codes...I'd have to find the paperwork to remind myself of exactly what they did. Figured out after this that Subaru added a filter to the high torque CVT in the FXT and WRX sometime during 2015 production, of course I have a 2014...the filter cannot be retrofitted, either, a casting change was involved.
    The CVT for the turbo cars is supposed to get a special fluid, too, which confuses the heck out of even the dealers...I'm pretty sure I got the wrong fluid at my 60kmile service and they also put the wrong stuff in after the repair before I caught them and they changed it again. Changing the fluid is tricky and is supposed to be done at a particular temperature so I preferred to have the dealers do it, but I am planning to learn the procedure myself to make sure I get the right stuff.
    Modders are also upset because the old 4 speed AT Subaru used to use could handle a lot of additional power without breaking, but the new CVTs are reputed to have trouble above around 300HP (stock is 250 for the FXT and 270 for the WRX). Two or three modders on a Forester forum I used to frequent returned their cars to stock after causing damage, had the CVTs repaired or replaced under warranty, and then sold them...pretty sleazy if you ask me.

    I do like driving with the CVT, the car just pulls and pulls without seeming to work hard. It has a mode that emulates an 8 speed tranny and I thought this would be fun to use with the paddle shifters, but the response to the paddle inputs is just too slow and it's too jerky to use in auto mode.
     
  6. YankeeRebel

    YankeeRebel Well-Known Member

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    Wow that's alot but from what I gathered the only real issue with the CVT was pre 2014 and with Turbo models? The Outback being a non turbo would not use the special tranny fluid you mentioned? Is that right as far as you know?
     
  7. Indrid Cold

    Indrid Cold Member In Black

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    Sorry, should have put some breaks in there!
    Yes, the high torque Subaru CVTs were modified early on and I have to assume the change improved the trannies.
    I don't know if this is the only reason Subaru extended CVT warranties, though. The "standard" CVT in my daughter's Impreza was also extended, but maybe that was a goodwill move in response to word of problems with the turbo models getting out.

    Is the Outback you are looking at a 6 cylinder model? If yes, I think those also use the high torque CVT...would be worth some investigation on your part.
    On a tangent, I was pretty serious about trading in my '96 Outback with the 2.2l in on one with the 3.0l boxer 6 when they first came out...problem was that they also redesigned the cabin and it wasn't nearly as comfortable for as the '96. That car fit me better than anything else I've owned, but it had a hard time getting out of its own way.
     
  8. YankeeRebel

    YankeeRebel Well-Known Member

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    I will be shooting for the 4 Cylinder, I test drove both and to be honest the extra power does not seem worth the loss of gas mileage. The 4 Cyl drove really well. I was concerned with road noise but the 576 Watt 12 Speaker Harmon Kardon system should take care of that.
     
  9. Hank Kingsley

    Hank Kingsley Enlightened Antagonist

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    I find the dual clutch slusho in my Audi S4 seamless and very fast shifting.
     
  10. Indrid Cold

    Indrid Cold Member In Black

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    The 2.5l boxer Subaru uses now is way ahead of the overmatched engine my old Outback had. I've driven some Foresters with that engine as loaner cars and they weren't bad at all. The 2.0l in my daughter's Impreza feels taxed even in that little car...
     
  11. Cobrabit

    Cobrabit Resident Polymath

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    Today's CVTs are designed to keep the car's powerband in peak fuel efficiency. Designing for race conditions, a CVT will keep the car at peak power. The F1 team in the early 90s tested a CVT that was able to handle the 750ish horsepower they put out back then and recorded lap times over 2 seconds faster than the competition. F1 banned the CVT for competition purposes and then research was delayed a couple decades due to the ban, as manufactures used F1 as their testbeds. F1 teams still wish they could have a CVT.

    A DCT is certainly a step up from automatics, but it's still shifting between different ratio gears which will still take time for the engine to get back to peak power, while a CVT has an 'infinite' gearset which can maintain the engine at the peak values.


    I stand by my statement that a dedicated CVT for performance cars would surpass manual, automatic, and DCT transmissions.
     
  12. Hank Kingsley

    Hank Kingsley Enlightened Antagonist

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    Ever driven a dual clutch auto? There is no lag and the shifts are like an F1 car. Bang, bang, bang....

    1,3,5,7 handled by one side, 2,4,6 handled by the other. No lag I notice. And I drive it hard.

    So possibly one designed for performance cars, but none of the current ones attract me.
     
  13. Cobrabit

    Cobrabit Resident Polymath

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    Yes I have and they are the best out there currently for performance cars. The DCT is allowed in F1, but the CVT is not because it still allows F1 to say that the driver is shifting on their own. With out the ban 25 years ago, the DCT would likely never have beendeveloped.


    You still hear the rev difference when shifting a DCT even though F1 cars have close ratios to keep it as close to the peak power band as possible. The DCT is great but would still lay behind a similar developed CVT for F1.



    I'm sure most will still not believe it mainly due to the current cars with a CVT for fuel efficiency versus those with DCT in performance cars, but oh well.
     
  14. Hank Kingsley

    Hank Kingsley Enlightened Antagonist

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    As I said, a purpose built one maybe.

    But I enjoy my DCT more than any 5 or 6 speed I ever drove. And I have little love for the cars currently sporting CVT.

    So it's a long way off.
     
  15. Cobrabit

    Cobrabit Resident Polymath

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    If only the R& D wasn't killed off with the ban 25 years ago who knows where we'd be at now.
     
  16. Roy Munson

    Roy Munson Posting with one hand

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    The CVT in my Murano fake shifts if you put your foot down because I guess people like that kind of thing.
     
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  17. Roy Munson

    Roy Munson Posting with one hand

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    The one in my Audi A3 was pretty nice. Only place the transmission got wonky was in stop and go traffic and you're accelerating and it shifts to 2, the other side flips to 3 preparing for the next upshift take your foot off the gas slow down and brake and BAM... it slams you into first gear.

    It was pretty nice in any other driving.
     
  18. Hank Kingsley

    Hank Kingsley Enlightened Antagonist

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    I tend to drive in manual mode so it's shifting when I press a paddle.

    I've read at the Audi forum that the CVT is clunky too at low speeds. But I've never driven one so can say for sure.

    All I know is I love my DSG....