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9 Speed Auto...

knight001

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Hi All,

Firstly, I hope everyone is safe and well...

Just wanted to see if anyone agrees with this comment I read in a review of the ZB Commo VXR about the 9 Speed auto...


The nine-speed feels tuned for the turbo four-cylinder, in which it is brilliant because it smoothly surfs along the low-rev torque characteristics of that 2.0-litre. With this 3.6-litre making its outputs so high in the rev band, though, the way the auto slinks to tall gears, allows the throttle to turn doughy on even slight hills, then demands the driver prod the throttle to call it into action, is a flaw that impacts drivability and economy.


Using the adaptive cruise control at 100km/h in undulating countryside simply highlighted this problem, given it allowed the speed to drop under 90km/h on hills before the auto frantically grabbed three lower gears.

I do agree that the throttle can turn a bit sluggish on slight hills and does require the right foot to demand more power on the odd occasion. In regards to the adaptive cruise, I don't really use it much to notice...

The review can be found at: https://www.goauto.com.au/car-reviews/holden/commodore/vxr/2018-06-15/73567.html

Thoughts?
 

Jack GS

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I have found the transmission to be on point in almost all regards. I've used adaptive cruise in exactly the same scenario as described and I have never noticed any "doughy[ness]". Cruising around in 9th gear at 1,000-1,500 RPM is great for flat roads but it's silly to expect a nearly 1,800kg car to not have to downshift a few times, almost imperceptibly I might add, to get the engine back in the most efficient power delivery.

The NA V6 makes peak power and torque at nearly twice the RPM as the eager 2.0T. Naturally, the transmission will be more prone to downshifting. I think the reviewer has simply discovered the "doughy" deadspot in the middle of the V6 rev range and misplaced blame on the transmission.
 

StrayKiwi

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Yes I have experienced what the reviewer said, with the adaptive cruise sometimes getting behind maintaining set speed on steep gradients. As I have said previously, the gearbox is not psychic so a couple of flicks of the left paddle can help it get ready for what is coming before your speed decays. I also find that using the more sportier drive mode available will help the car be more aggressive with holding gears when climbing hills which helps it maintain speed.

I do find it strange that someone is complaining about having to actively drive a car. To me this foible is a very small price to pay and can be easily mitigated with some forethought, I wonder how this reviewer coped with driving cars from the 1960's/70's where there almost no assistance (you had power steering if you were lucky) and you had to do everything yourself?
 

87VLCALAIS

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Some reviewers seem to always need to find something to pick on. I think the auto is pretty bloody good. I also suspect is has been calibrated for the V6 when mated to the V6.

Like a lot of things about our cars these days there is significant focus on fuel economy and CO2 gms/km or what ever it is they measure. Look at the tech we have that's geared to achieving these figures. Aluminium bonnet, auto stop start, no spare tyre or space saver, etc. I'd say the the gearbox has been calibrated to select the highest gear possible and hold onto that gear as long as possible to get the best fuel economy.
 

Skylarking

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All smart autos have a fundamental flaw in that they can adapt to the driver. Often such can be a bad thing if you drive like an old man in traffic for months then try and hammer it… In such cases the auto will think you are still an old man and behave a little slow :p:p:p

Then there is all that electronic throttle control side of things coming into the equation where pedal travel /= throttle opening :rolleyes:

PS: If you’ve already bought the car, then reading reviews now is academic. If you haven’t bought the car and considering one, take it for a drive and make up your own mind ;)
 

87VLCALAIS

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It doesn't take long for it to adapt. A few minutes or less of giving some jandel is all it takes.
 

lmoengnr

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It doesn't take long for it to adapt. A few minutes or less of giving some jandel is all it takes.
Yeah, just have to 'send it' a few times to reset the memory... :cool:
 
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