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Duck

New smart shifts SLOWER!

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Before I gave back the loaner 451 that I had while Nosedive was in for routine service, I made a couple of videos to check the timing on my computer when I got home of the shifts.Average shift time, from request to engagement on the 451: 1.5 secondsAverage shift time, from request to engagement on the 450 cdi: 1.1 seconds!Amazing! I felt it was "worse" on the loaner, but I didn't think it would be THAT much worse!-Iain

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One and a half seconds!!!! At 80km/h you're 30 metres (100 feet) down the road during the shift change interval! [check my math]

:bed: wake me when it's over...

:sun:

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You guys....its all in yer head.

and

Yeah. He's just favoring it because it's green and cute.

Like a mother with it's children.

Except that Iain works in engineering and took the trouble to make, "... a couple of videos to check the timing on [his] computer... ", I might toss it off as subjective too.

Just like my service advisor says my door handle feels perfectly normal when he pulls it, but when I put a fisherman's scale on two other cars and find my handle needs 80% more pull to open... no subjectivity there, bro'. It is what it is.

Like Gent says, it's all about the numbers!

B :sun:

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Maybe someone should take it up with Smart. It could essentially mean they're falsely advertising. If I get my car and start to realise that it's gear change is slower than the old one I won't be happy. Especially after they've gone and made all these claims about it being 50% faster.

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Could it possibly be still operating in the "break-in" dictates of software?

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Actually you're right, Gent - I seem to remember that back when everyone was getting new 450's, we were noting how after the break in period, the shifting sped up. The 451 I had, I drove between about 1 100 km and 1 700 km.I'd be curious to see what results other people get. I've also got the TDC PowerBox CR installed; but since it's only attached to the fuel rail, I don't see how it could be speeding up my shift times.-Iain

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My 451 has MUCH smoother, quicker changes recently. I'm not sure when it happened, but I think it was at the 5,000km mark.

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This is something that I'll be on the watch for, I should hit the magic 5000 mark by the end of May.Will report back if the shift time improves or not. :lol:

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based upon what i have read about the learning computer, i would anticipate a loaner to have the worst possible shift times due to the multiple people driving it in all different manners and styles and i would expect a vehicle used exclusively by one driver to have remarkably better performance and behavior for the same reason.

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@ rawlus - different people driving would have no bearing on the shift times. When a request for shift is made by pressing the lever, it's completely automated (the shifting sequence).@ booger, I don't see how it's possible that the shift times would be significantly lower on a Brabus, unless they've put on a bigger gearmotor to drive the clutch actuator or selection drum. Without a bigger motor, it's simply not possible to shift any faster (unless they cut corners in software, which I think is a big no-no; obviously Getrag would have optimized the shifting function for the best possible engagement with no delay).-Iain

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I know I definitely noticed a difference between the two. ... Before I even realised that they had done stuff to it. It was only when I asked why it felt better that he explained.... but yeh... hopefully it's not some dodgy fix that will decrease the life of gear box.

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I just found this ... only relates to the Brabus though. Doesn't really tell you how they did it.Smart's semiautomatic five-speed transmission has been improved by Brabus to quicken the switch between gear ratios by 20 percent, and both 1st and 5th have shorter ratios as well. That's good news for the stoplight grand prix, but not so good news for refinement. The jerk between ratios can become irritating, although if you lift off the throttle during upshifts, it's possible to make smooth progress.

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... obviously Getrag would have optimized the shifting function for the best possible engagement with no delay...

Heh-heh... there you go presumptively placing your faith in the engineers again :devil::sun:

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I am one, so yeah, I do actually.:: mildly offended ::-Iain

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What type of train do they let you run Duck? :lol::lol: The euro smart had pretty good shifting if I recall - had to to keep up with the extra horses - perhaps a dumbed down NA thing to keep people from complaining about abrupt shifts. Cheers,Cameron

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:: mildly offended ::

I understand, Duck; really I do. It's just that we see so many optimally-engineered items arrive in the marketplace having been bastardized by the marketing department or some other filter-before-release function that has little to do with optimal engineering.

I am sure it's different in some trades like (I think) yours where the engineering must be the be-all and end-all arbiter of safety and performance, but where subjective considerations of comfort, costing, suitability-to-market, etc. impinge, sometimes (quite often, actually) engineering excellence gets sadly dumbed down.

respect, cousin!

B :sun:

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I've had a 450 since Dec '04, and a 451 since Dec '07 - but its been parked until just very recently.Ok, I only have <500km on it still but I have to say its way smoother shifting than the 450. Not even close. Is it faster? I'll take Duck's word on it, but its definately smoother.I still prefer my 450 though... no doubt about it. There are things I like about the 451 better, for sure... but honestly the transmission isn't one of them. Nothing to do with smooth or fast though... I hate not having that 6th gear and I find I *yuck* drive in auto mode all the time because of the brain-dead P D N R shifter thing. I much much much prefer the 450's shifter.And does anyone else hate the "creep" feature? My lord, if I want the car to move... I'll hit the pedal!But on the plus side, I get to pay $1.40 a litre for the premium gas! I filled up for the first time (since December)... there goes the fuel budget for 2008 so I better make it last :P - Steven

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Oh god no, the 451 shifting is insanely rough (either that, or my clutch is so worn that my car shifts very smoothly). The only way I could get a smooth (no head-banging on the headrest) shift out of it was to ease up on the accelerator.Creep is awful. It fights SO HARD to push the car forward. If you push down on the brake, it will fight to creep for about 4 seconds, then you can feel it give up and open the clutch. But if you ease your foot even a millimetre off the brake, it will fight to creep forward again. Terrible!!-Iain

Edited by Duck

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Oh god no, the 451 shifting is insanely rough (either that, or my clutch is so worn that my car shifts very smoothly). The only way I could get a smooth (no head-banging on the headrest) shift out of it was to ease up on the accelerator.Creep is awful. It fights SO HARD to push the car forward. If you push down on the brake, it will fight to creep for about 4 seconds, then you can feel it give up and open the clutch. But if you ease your foot even a millimetre off the brake, it will fight to creep forward again. Terrible!!-Iain

Sounds like every automatic I'd driven before the smart. In my 450 it's a truly new experience not to have to hold down the brake or put it in neutral at a light. I used to often slip into neutral on my other automatic cars because the engine would labour so much against the brake I'd fear a stall (never happened though). I'd even sometimes ease up and let it creep a bit if there was room.I'm liking that Iris doesn't creep and I can see after years of driving a 450 one would find it irritating to experience "normal" automatic mode.Just slip the gear into neutral if you have to sit at a light too long. It makes thing more relaxed.

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