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2015 Subaru Outback Limited 2.5 Carbide Gray
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24 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Has anyone done a comparison on gas milelage using just the paddle shifter vs just normal driving with the automatic transmision?
 

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'11 outback 2.5i premium '12 impreza sport limited
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3,814 Posts
I seriously doubt using just the paddle shifters would give better results. the new impreza with a manual transmission is rated at 33mpg highway while the CVT is rated at 36mpg highway. a computer is almost always more efficient. besides that'd be pretty pointless. I tried that on my last car for a little bit, then I realized how stupid it was.
 

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2013 Outback 2.5 premium, NON pzev!
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43 Posts
I use the paddles mainly for downshifting, as when approaching a red light or corner. Don't know whether the brake wear saving is offset by higher rpm's, but my last car (05 Passat) went over 120K before replace of the front brakes, rear still had 40%. I also use the paddles to upshift. At certain speeds the cvt seems to favor a higher rpm, i.e. around 45 mph on level pavement cvt wants the equivalent of 5th gear but paddle will allow 6th. Cvt doesn't seem to choose 6th equivalent until around 50mph. I've noticed this at some slower speeds that are typical of some city speed limits as well. I only have a little over 1500 miles tracked on fuelly but so far getting 29+mpg with a mix of driving. Also this is a non pzev. Time will tell.:D
 

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2013 Outback 3.6L Limited with EyeSight
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218 Posts
Paddle Shifter results in higher RPM's which in turn burn more fuel.
 

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2013 Outback 2.5 premium, NON pzev!
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43 Posts
Paddle Shifter results in higher RPM's which in turn burn more fuel.
And you are going to give us some sort of data other than your opinion I hope, to make that claim for all driving circumstances! Or is this just a hypotheses, otherwise known as a WAG, (hopefully no other colloquial definition is required). ha ha:rolleyes::rolleyes::rolleyes:
Darn, I don't have any hard factual data either, arrrgh!!!
 

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2013 OB 2.5i Premium/DDD Graphite Gray Metallic OP#2 Weathertec Window Deflectors
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405 Posts
I think the faster you get it in 6th. gear the better the fuel mileage, you can watch the tach. drop when it's in 6th. gear when using the paddles, it's great for off ramps, I''m not one who likes using the brakes also, I also don't put the pedal to the floor when in traffic, or light to light, I don't tail gate, or ride my brakes, or drive using both feet 0-60 days are over the cost is to great in today's world.
 

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'14 3.6R Outback
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2,345 Posts
I use the paddles mainly for downshifting, as when approaching a red light or corner.
It has been posted this is not recommended on a regular basis and is only ment for maintaining speed on a grade.

Subaru got back to me via email from my question through the website;

Thanks for your patience as I researched engine braking in your 2013 Outback with CVT. I sent it to two separate Technical representatives. They both replied with similar feedback.

It is only recommended in situations where the engine braking would be needed, such as “when descending a grade." Normally, a driver would have no need to engine brake when just coming to a stop at a light or stop sign. Since the transmission is not designed to handle this, it would accelerate wear on the CVT.

I think that's enough for me to not make a habit of it. Thanks for all the input - good forum!
Having said that most engineers don't like being in the car with me either.
 

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2013 Outback 2.5 premium, NON pzev!
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43 Posts
It has been posted this is not recommended on a regular basis and is only ment for maintaining speed on a grade.



Having said that most engineers don't like being in the car with me either.
I guess I'm having a hard time accepting this from a couple of "tech reps" not the engineers or test group that came up with the design. Why have paddle shifters for up/down shift if it's not to be used whenever you choose. That's the whole point of having them! Otherwise they would just stick with D, 4, 3, 2,L. We used the "tiptronic" shift able transmissions in both an Audi and VW Passat and never had a problem. I may be completely wrong, but I think some naysayer's are stuck in the past design mindset of older generation transmissions. BTW: Every time I start and drive the darn thing I increase wear. :rolleyes::rolleyes:
 

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2017 2.5 Touring
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1,412 Posts
There are all kinds of reasons for using the paddle shifters to overide the CVT.
Better gas mileage is not likely one of them.
 

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2013 Legacy Lim CVT Car: 2011 OB Prem 6MT Car: 2006 Miata GT 6MT mc: 2003 Honda GL1800A * Reunite Gondwanaland *
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3,565 Posts
Why have paddle shifters for up/down shift if it's not to be used whenever you choose.
TECHNICAL FOUL! -- Unsportsmanlike use of logic on the intertubes!

...maybe there should only be an upshift paddle?

Looby

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2012 OUTBACK 2.5 LIMITED SILVER ICE Metallic, moon and nav free
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1,220 Posts
I find the paddle shifters pretty much useless in this car.
 

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2013 Outback 2.5 premium, NON pzev!
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TECHNICAL FOUL! -- Unsportsmanlike use of logic on the intertubes!

...maybe there should only be an upshift paddle?

Looby

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Yea as a kid I had to write "I will not question the teacher in class", oh I don't know hundreds of times before getting my own personal study location in the hall. Also voted "most likely to piss off others by questioning questionable statements"! :p:p:D
 

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2013 Outback 3.6R - Graphite Grey
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34 Posts
I find the paddle shifters pretty much useless in this car.
Agree.

I have the H6 with 5EAT trans. The paddle shifters are more like shift "requests". The computer "grants" your request if allowable. I couldn't upshift to 5th any faster than the computer would allow. Downshifts are annoying because the computer revs up the engine to match your speed before you start to slow down. I couldn't imagine doing that with a trailer behind the car.

Pretty much useless.
 

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Tungsten 2017 2.5 Limited w Eyesight SOLD!
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When using the paddle shifters, traffic anticipation is the name of the game, as it always is anyway :D . The delay in the downshifts is because of computer algorithms that keep the tranny shifting smoothly and avoid damage from improper use. I do use the paddles when towing and it works for me although 99% of the time I let the computer do the work for me. Like Bradze said, it is more efficient that way....
 

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Onyx, 2008 LL Bean 3.0R and 2017 Honda Civic Hatchback Sport Touring
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My wife lets me drive her fancy six speed stick/auto car and I did an experiment when she was out of town for a week and drove the stick vs. automatic shifts for two days each and the mileage display on the dash showed it got much better mileage when I let the trans decide when to shift. The auto trans mode kept the little "Eco" light on nearly all the time, while my winding it out before shifting didn't. Not a scientific test, but proof to me that my driving style causes the mileage to suffer when I'm using manual mode.
 

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2018 Outback Limited 2.5i Dark Blue Pearl/Ivory w'Eyesight
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703 Posts
My wife lets me drive her fancy six speed stick/auto car and I did an experiment when she was out of town for a week and drove the stick vs. automatic shifts for two days each and the mileage display on the dash showed it got much better mileage when I let the trans decide when to shift. The auto trans mode kept the little "Eco" light on nearly all the time, while my winding it out before shifting didn't. Not a scientific test, but proof to me that my driving style causes the mileage to suffer when I'm using manual mode.
That is true of many stick shift drivers. They will wind it up before shifting, whereas the auto(computer) will shift at the most economical point. As I mentioned somewhere else , the multi-gear auto trans "hunt" constantly to maximize economy. Drives me crazy (not a long drive, I admit) going up to Auburn from Sacramento.
 

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Does any one have a source saying we shouldn't downshift to engine brake? To the person that said the engine revs higher and uses more gas, I think this is not true. The engine is rotating, but modern engines are smart enough to cut fuel supply during engine braking. The mpg gauge on my OB seems to peg to the + (fuel saving) position during engine braking.
 

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2013 2.5i Premium 6mt, Twilight Blue
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Does any one have a source saying we shouldn't downshift to engine brake? To the person that said the engine revs higher and uses more gas, I think this is not true. The engine is rotating, but modern engines are smart enough to cut fuel supply during engine braking. The mpg gauge on my OB seems to peg to the + (fuel saving) position during engine braking.
Correct-oh, when you're off the gas you're basically getting infinite miles to the gallon. I believe the post you're referring to was aimed towards accelerating; using the paddle shifters will likely result in up-shifting at higher RPM's than with CVT-auto.
 

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Has anyone done a comparison on gas milelage using just the paddle shifter vs just normal driving with the automatic transmision?
Using 6 prefixed gear ratios via the paddle shifters or a very wide range of possible gear ratios available to the CVT in AT Mode? Umm No simply from the point of the CVT having a much wider range of possible gear ratios to use it makes zero sense that paddle shifter use would return better mileage over a fairly large period of time and conditions.
 
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