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Formerly 04 Outback 3.0R VDC, now 2011 Mitsubishi Pajero GLS DiD
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Discussion Starter #1
Had the Outback's 12500km (6month) service on last Friday and asked them to "make it shift faster" which was my main bugbear with the car seeming reluctant to downshift at times and waiting what seemed ages at times between starting to change gears and finally changing.

The good news is that they changed the program and now the standard Drive program feels more sporty than the Sport setting used to be. Gear changes are now very fast and positive, at least as good as the Mazda6 was. The car feels far faster, yet from the checking I've done so far seems to be using less fuel if anything. I haven't really tried the Sport setting since the upgrade, but I'm loving this new program. :D

For anyone that's test driven a 5AT equiped Outback and thought the shifts could be better, don't give up on it as it's just a matter of uploading a new program.
 

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04 outback 3.0R
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Jondalar
i had the wifes 3.0r serviced last week,and asked about the g/box program changes or adjustments,the service manager wasnt aware of such a thing.i would like to know how the changes were made,via a remote controler/laptop or somthing?
or are the preset modes in the g/box program.

thanks
 

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Formerly 04 Outback 3.0R VDC, now 2011 Mitsubishi Pajero GLS DiD
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Discussion Starter #3
Jimmbo - I wasn't around when they did it, but like many modern cars they have a diagnostic hookup to a computer, either local or back at the factory. I haven't asked if it's just the VDC equiped versions that this can be done to, but I'd be surprised if it was.

I checked today and the Sport mode is changed too, it's shifting faster and more positively, main difference to the standard D setting is it holds the gears longer, they both shift down just about as easily when you hit a hill etc.

Manual mode also shifts more instantaneously than before, very fast postive shifts, except when shifting up and it's only just allowed the shift, sometimes slurs those a little.

Cheers,
Karl
 

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04 outback 3.0R
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93 Posts
Ok thanks I will chase it up,I dont really have a problem with the shift pattern just occassionally if you dont hold the throttle at a consistant point the g/box hesitates to change but its somthing that i think the g/box takes the throttle position/speed and determines what gear it should be in.
Still love driving it when the wife lets me.

Dave
 

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VERY INTERESTING

I have a problem like yours. Though the up-shifts in my car are firm and decisive the down-shifts take longer, like thinking it twice before.
But my real problem is with the sportshift, up-shifting or down-shifting. It take something like a full second after the stick-shift to execute.
Subaru Motors say they can do nothing about it!
In your fixed car, how long is the shifting delay? Is one second (one Mississippi :) ) or less?
Thanks
 

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Hokey Pokey Champion
'05 Gold OBXT Stg2+
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3,594 Posts
Yea, downshifting via the manual mode on my OBXT sucks. When it takes less than 2 seconds to rev from 2k to 6k for the first few gears, it makes it rediculous to try and anticipate that shift 1 sec ahead of time.

So, I'm left with leaving it in auto-sport mode if I want speedy acceleration. It upshifts pretty fast if I want to slow down or obtain a lower gear for passing, but downshifting I would agree takes at least a full second...all but eliminating the joy of using it.

If there's a "program upgrade" out there that can quicken this response, I'd be all over it.

Is there anyone else who feels the up/down forward/back directions should be opposite on the sportshift?
 

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Formerly 04 Outback 3.0R VDC, now 2011 Mitsubishi Pajero GLS DiD
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Discussion Starter #7
Jazzymt it really sounds like you are referring to the shifts the opposite to what most people do i.e. upshift is normally shifting to a HIGHER gear, downshifting is shifting to a LOWER gear. My results are the opposite to yours, upshifting to a higher gear is very fast, either using full auto or sportshift, but downshifting to a lower gear in full auto is just crazy, mild extra throttle it copes with ok, but suddenly giving half throttle or more and it stops to think for a good 2 seconds before deciding which gear to grab. It doesn't make any difference if it's in sport mode or not. Sportshift is better, still takes too long but at least you can plan for gaps in the traffic.

As for the shift directions of the +/- I came from a Mazda 6 which had them the other way around, I did prefer the Mazda sysytem but I got used to the Subaru one, now if only the changes were totally instantaneous like in the 6...
 

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Hokey Pokey Champion
'05 Gold OBXT Stg2+
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Er, ahh...yea, I realized I wasn't being very consistent w/my nomenclature as I got halfway thru the post, but just said, f it.

Ok, so downshifting is shifting to a lower gear, ei, from 2nd to 1st. In that case, downshifting is very fast, and fun (dangerously fun :) in sportshift manual mode. I also find in full auto mode & sport, it downshifts for passing speed pretty well. If I want it to take off in the middle of driving along ploddingly, when I put the pedal to the metal, it shifts quickly and hauls ass.

Manual upshifts suck though...it's pretty much impossible to do well in the first two gears. I have to leave it in auto mode if I want to take off from a stop...otherwise I end up hitting the rev limiter (which is a violent, horrible experience in first gear) or shifting too soon because I'm trying to "guess" ahead of time when it will be needed.

I wonder if the H6 tranny is programmed to be less aggressive than the XT? When I had the Eddie bauer as a loaner for awhile, it certainly didn't feel as sporty when I floored it, but I didn't spend too much time thinking about it since I was planning on getting my XT back in a couple days.
 

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jazzymt said:

Manual upshifts suck though...it's pretty much impossible to do well in the first two gears. I have to leave it in auto mode if I want to take off from a stop...otherwise I end up hitting the rev limiter (which is a violent, horrible experience in first gear) or shifting too soon because I'm trying to "guess" ahead of time when it will be needed.
Exactly!!! Do you feel they should have programmed to upshift automaticly even in sportshift?

In my car (3.0 R VDC in Europe) downshifting in sportshift suck also ...

Anyway, if someone find a solution (it's software after all ... I Think:rolleyes: ) please post it here.
Thanks
 

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2005 OB L.L. Bean
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trans program upgrade

I received notice from Subaru about the program upgrade on my 05 LL Bean. From what I remember from the letter, the change in program was to allow the transmission to shift automatically in the manual sport mode at a predetermined RPM. Sounded like some people had over-revved the engine??? I have not tried to see if it now does auto-shift.
I thought that the new programming made the car feel quicker as well. Glad to know I am not the only one.
I think the manual shifting is reverse of what it should be as well. Perhaps I was just used to those old video arcade games. I do not use the manual shift mode much; mostly just to down shift. I find the upshifting delay (1 Mississippi) more an annoyance. I like the manual mode for keeping the trans in a lower gear when I drive on the dirt/sand roads and trails.
 

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OBK H6 VDC 2005
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Jondalar said:
The good news is that they changed the program
Could you check with your dealer and post here the exact version number of the software he used for reprogramming your 5EAT?
It's really difficult down here to get it reprogrammed by a dealer. They always claim "Your software is the newest available...":rolleyes:

Knowing the version number can make whole thing much easier...:cool:
 

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Outback 2003 3.0R
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3.0R transmission program update

I followed up on the transmission software update/recall (to shift up to prevent enginer over-rev), to see if it did improve the shift response time (manual or auto mode) as suggested here.
Here's the summary:
- The software update/recall has only one effect: to prevent engine damage in manual mode. There is no change in shift response times or shift timing. This was verified with 2 dealers (Brisbane and Sydney in Australia), one of whom range Subaru Customer Service to confirm.
- The software upgrade is effected by changing a "cartridge", so there is no dealer control over transmission behaviour.

Based on this, there is still no solution to the lethargic transmission shifts. Very frustrating.
Other information from this discussion: The service consultant reckoned that the auto fitted to the 3.0R H6 is the same transmission that was in the BMW 330 Ci, with the only programming changes being related to matching it to the 3.0R motor characteristics. So he tended to discount the shift-delay issue.
So if he's right, I'm wondering if the long delay we experience when shifting involves the engine computer and electronic throttle. On a manual change, according to the dash display, the shift does occur very quickly, but the power delivery doesn't alter for around a second. So maybe the electronic throttle is being fiddled during the shift for reasons unknown, possibly to smooth out the changes, or prevent engine racing during the shift?
 

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Formerly 04 Outback 3.0R VDC, now 2011 Mitsubishi Pajero GLS DiD
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Discussion Starter #14
Update

Had my 50,000km service done yesterday and checked this out, I was told that not only was what the previous told me incorrect about the transmission being reprogramable by the dealer, that it would void the warranty if they did do it. I gets more interesting though - my loaner for the service was a new 2005 3.0R with Premium pack, it definitely shifted more responsilvely than my car had and was more enjoyable to drive in full auto.

They checked and my car needed the recall for the auto shift, so they installed that. I was then told "the auto uses fuzzy logic and changes it's shifts to suit your driving style" the service rep also said most couldn't tell any difference after the update but that one other customer had called in very happy with the much improved performance.

My initial impressions are that the update has made my 3.0R shift just like the new Aus 2005 model did, I was really pushing it in traffic today and it was responsive enough that I left it in full auto. THe car feels to have more torque with this update, perhaps that is why Hero felt the B9 had more, it had the new program?

One other point was he told me the recall was to correct a problem where when in Sport mode the transmission would sometimes stay in first gear at the redline, not Manual mode...
 

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Re: 3.0R transmission program update

dangermouse said:
On a manual change, according to the dash display, the shift does occur very quickly, but the power delivery doesn't alter for around a second. So maybe the electronic throttle is being fiddled during the shift for reasons unknown, possibly to smooth out the changes, or prevent engine racing during the shift?
I'm sure it's the other way around. The "shift" command is given, the display changes instantaneously but no actual change happens. After a long hesitation the actual change is performed very quickly. It's one of the quickest changes I've ever seen on a hydraulic automatic transmition (the fastest is in my Honda Jazz CVT). So the problem is with the delay between the time the command is given and executed. It happens the same on down-shifting or up-shifting. It has to be a software problem (or poor decision when they did it).
Could we jointly contact Subaru about this? We deserve a straight answer! :D
 

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Hey team Subaru, A few Things - auto and fuel consumption...
Got the Field Service on the Auto Transmission last service, and tested it on the way home. It did as it should but Horendous mechanical stress changing from 1st to 2nd at 7200rpm. The transmission did feel more responsive, but likely due to the mentioned fuzzy logic as the dealer's apprentice probably thrashed it around checking that the software upgrade had been installed OK. I've noticed it too after some ratbagging of my own. Bottom line tho, get a manual (need to get a Liberty 6 spd) if you can't live with the auto - it's pretty slick for an auto. Also heard a rumour that the MY06 3.0R (just out Aug 05) has had a mod to remove the flatspot down low, not confirmed yet and not sure if a mod to the auto or engine software.
Done over 30kkm now and fuel economy marginally better, esp on 98. No rattles but weird tyre wear on one rear tyre, wheel alignment OK.
 

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2005 Outback XT Limited, 1995 Saab 900 SET
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For anyone that's test driven a 5AT equiped Outback and thought the shifts could be better, don't give up on it as it's just a matter of uploading a new program. [/B][/QUOTE]

Does this update include the 2.5 XT (4 cylinder turbo also), I think it could shift a bit better too!

Thanks
 

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Long term Subaru Owner - Current Daily Drive: 2007 Lexus RX350, and E46 BMW 328i
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It is a year since the last post on this thread...... and I now have replaced my H6 with a 3.0R, and you guessed it - am experiencing this problem..

It is almost like the car stops to think for a second before responding to any decent prod of the throttle - damned annoying.

When I was at the dealers getting them to look at the air con last week I queried this hesitation, and was told "they all do it" and that it was due to the drive by wire technology - thought that was supposed to be a step forward, not a leap backwards.

Anyway, has there been any fix found inthe last year?

I was really keen on getting my 3.0R, and really want to like it, but it is getting harder and harder - I am getting frustrated with this car, nd can see it going soon ........ (even the 10 yr old 523i I brought when I sold my Jeep goes better, much better - in fact I am starting to drive it in preference to my year old 3.0R now).

I wish I could bring back my "old red".
 

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Anyway, has there been any fix found inthe last year?

[/B]


Well ... I was contacted by the local dealer on May and they told me I should take the car there for a "computer upgrade" (sic). I did so two months later. I asked the technicians what was it about and they told me "a minor transmit ion fix for smoother gear changes"
The **** it was that! I nearly bumped the car in front of me on the way home because the hesitation I've described in this forum was gone altogether. I have a "new" gear box now, a excellent one.
I keep a reservation though : Maybe, I say maybe, the fussy logic memory was erased and when the car re-learn my usually smooth driving style, go back to bad habits :(
I live in Greece though and I know that there are major technical as well as company politics differences along deferent regions.
 

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Long term Subaru Owner - Current Daily Drive: 2007 Lexus RX350, and E46 BMW 328i
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kopeliadis said:


........Maybe, I say maybe, the fussy logic memory was erased and when the car re-learn my usually smooth driving style, go back to bad habits :(
.
I had this done last time I was at the dealers - no discernable difference. Will askthem aboutthe fix when I take it in to have air con fixed under warranty this week.
 
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