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Old 05-04-2017, 09:11 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Hypermiling and paddleshifters

I am considering buying a G2 Insight. It is a '10 EX. EXes have paddleshifters so you can pretend to have a 7 speed auto rather than a droaning CVT.

One thing kind of cool about the G2 that the G1 doesn't have is it has an actual EV only mode....sort of. The VTEC is configured to allow deactivization of all cylinders. In this mode, the IMA motor is doing all the pushing. The ICE is spinning, but not putting much of a drag on things as it is keeping all valves closed. This "ghetto EV only" mode is not as efficient as a Prius' but it's better than nothin'.

Anyway, I was thinking that manually paddleshifting rather than letting the computer have all the fun might be helpful. Mostly by forcing it to the highest possible gear ratio during DFCO, but also by trying to extend EVO mode by holding a lower "gear".

In reality, I suspect that the CVT is smarter than me when it comes to managing this stuff, but I would be interested to hear about anyone's experience regarding paddleshifting and efficiency vs letting the CVT do its thing.

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Old 05-04-2017, 10:31 AM   #2 (permalink)
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You know what's going on outside of the car, the transmission doesn't.

You know what you're trying to accomplish, the transmission doesn't.

Yes, there are times when letting the machine take over can be more effective. there's also a lot to be said for driving it yourself. I recommend a mix of the two.
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Old 05-04-2017, 02:38 PM   #3 (permalink)
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i use manual mode on my dad's Mercedes to engine brake.

the consumption difference is noticeable
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Old 05-04-2017, 05:16 PM   #4 (permalink)
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You will be able to tell pretty quickly by experimenting whether you can out-smart the default/automatic programming of the CVT.

Most automatics I've driven that have a manual mode or paddle shifters benefit from manually upshifting to get to top gear sooner to save gas.

EG: "Short-shifting" a Jeep Patriot & Audi A4 CVT (forcing early "upshift") saves gas

Also some CVT's like it when you use cruise control as much as possible - some Mirage owners report that engaging cruise drops engine RPM more than simply backing off the throttle once you've reached cruising speed. I didn't experience this in the Mirage CVT sedan I test drove, but I may have already "trained" the car with a light foot (assuming it has adaptive logic).
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Old 05-04-2017, 05:19 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pete c View Post
Mostly by forcing it to the highest possible gear ratio during DFCO,
Might be counter-intuitive, but dropping gears might work better to prolong DFCO, since its only active above a certain RPM. IE. if you leave it in the highest gear, it'll drop out of fuel cut at a higher road speed than a lower gear. (Or you could shift to a lower gear when you near the lower threshold of the next higher gear.) You can figure this out by watching the instant fuel consumption gauge and experimenting.
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Old 05-04-2017, 05:38 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Even the longest of the 7 simulated gears in the 2nd gen Insight CVT is not as long as the max ratio in D. In which it resides all the time if you go at a steady speed above 35 mph.
So if you go for max economy the paddle shifter gears are useless.

Going down a mountain is another story. Paddle shifters let you choose the level of engine braking, which is very useful. Going up it is back to D again as it climbs very well in D and it negotiates the hairpin bends like a dream, while trying to paddle shift in hairpin bends is comical.
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Old 05-04-2017, 07:33 PM   #7 (permalink)
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So, 7th "gear" is not the top gear? That doesn't make much sense. Thanks for the input, Red. Sounds like coasting downhill is the best time to use it. Does paddleshift downshifting have any effect on the amount of regen? It seems like it might.
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Old 05-04-2017, 07:53 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RedDevil View Post
Even the longest of the 7 simulated gears in the 2nd gen Insight CVT is not as long as the max ratio in D. In which it resides all the time if you go at a steady speed above 35 mph.
So if you go for max economy the paddle shifter gears are useless.
So it's not possible to 'short shift' even below 35 mph and then shift to D? D is always the lowest RPM regardlwss of road speed?
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Old 05-05-2017, 06:10 AM   #9 (permalink)
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7th gear is not the real top gear indeed. Maybe they chose it not to max out to prevent or spread wear over the CVT cones?

D will make the ratio as long as possible, if you are not flooring it that is.
Under 35 mph the enging purrs along at about 1100 rpm and the CVT is somewhere in between minimum and maximum range.
Once you go above 35 mph the CVT maxes out and the revs climb in unison with the speed ar a ratio of 20 RPM per km/h so if I do 100 km/h the RPM is 2000, 80 means 1600, etc.
That would be 2000 RPM at 62 mph, 1600 at 50 mph, etc.
When I use the paddles the 7th gear has about 2400 RPM at 100 km/h; on my UG is see the engine load % drops and instant fuel consumption rises somewhat.

When you accelerate or climb the revs will rise in D, and maybe using the paddles you can keep the revs lower using more assist than D allows for. It is hard to ABA test though.
I do not know how low I can get the RPM to go by shortshifting with the paddles, but I will try it out when I go home this afternoon. The last mile of my commute is mostlly a 20 mph zone.

When going downhill the regen may max out quickly; you raise the revs just to relieve the brakes. I'd say the biggest benefit of using the paddle shifters is that it locks the revs to a speed so you get audial feedback on your speed.
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Old 05-05-2017, 09:49 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MetroMPG View Post
Also some CVT's like it when you use cruise control as much as possible - some Mirage owners report that engaging cruise drops engine RPM more than simply backing off the throttle once you've reached cruising speed. I didn't experience this in the Mirage CVT sedan I test drove, but I may have already "trained" the car with a light foot (assuming it has adaptive logic).
That makes perfect sense to me, along the lines of "the transmission doesn't know what you're trying to do." Once you engage cruise, the computers can predict a little farther out than just "the driver's being awfully light on the gas at the moment."

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Transmission type Efficiency
Manual neutral engine off.100% @MPG <----- Fun Fact.
Manual 1:1 gear ratio .......98%
CVT belt ............................88%
Automatic .........................86%

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