Stop and Go Driving - Alfa Romeo 4C Forums
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post #1 of 14 (permalink) Old 07-18-2017, 10:37 AM Thread Starter
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Stop and Go Driving

In my morning commute with my daily driver 4C there's usually 5-10 minutes of stop and go heavy traffic. I have long used All Weather mode, which makes it more smooth, but lately have also switched to Manual so I can switch back and forth between 1st and 2nd gear, as this avoids the automatic transmission trying to pick gears and bouncing back and forth as much. In first gear at idle engine speed it goes about 5 mph. Perhaps others have different preferred techniques, but thought I'd throw it on here for whatever it's worth.
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post #2 of 14 (permalink) Old 07-18-2017, 11:26 AM
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Just hop on the shoulder and let 'er rip! Cops won't care.


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post #3 of 14 (permalink) Old 07-18-2017, 11:46 AM
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Neutral, get off and push it :-D

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post #4 of 14 (permalink) Old 07-18-2017, 03:08 PM
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Just hop on the shoulder and let 'er rip! Cops won't care.
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post #5 of 14 (permalink) Old 07-18-2017, 04:08 PM
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Smoother = worse

Smoother in slicker weather = good, because some of the harshness and abrupt movement is removed mostly by slipping the clutches. In slick weather, clutch life sacrificed for your life, almost literally.

For example, if you drive a manual, and you want super smooth accel and gear changes, you do this by slipping (wearing) the clutch. You can amaze your friends, and make them think you're the best manual trans driver ever (Wow, such a smooooth shifter!), but to do so, you will slip your clutch (more than is needed), and clutch wear is the price to pay.

The gearbox in "All Weather Mode" puts safety and smoothness first. After all, a little clutch wear will help keep you from disrupting traction with sudden bursts of power hitting the wheels. Solution? Slip the clutch. Now now... it might do this by taming the throttle reaction, but news flash: This results in more clutch slip, because low power output requires slow/slipping clutch to move the car and not stall the engine.

Slipping the clutch is also how automated manuals creep in traffic. The best thing to do? Leave a gap; keep the car rolling. If you come to a point where you inch along, the best thing to do is stop. Let a gap open, and then accelerate so that the trans in in gear. It this always possible? No... you might have to inch along, because of how lanes merge or some jerk drives, but your goal should be to be in gear or not in gear. Inching along is accomplished by... slipping the clutch.

>Drive in Natural mode if Dynamic is too aggressive for the finer control needed in traffic.

>Avoid All Weather Mode unless you need the computer to slip the clutches to smooth out the power delivery and keep your tires planted and safe

>Don't inch along in traffic. Drive in a way that lets the trans stay in gear; leave a gap so you stay in gear; inch along as conditions warrant, but look to minimize it. Stop fully if you need to stop the inching/slipping, then use the gap to stay in gear.

>Shift yourself if you'd like, because you can see the road ahead and the computer cannot, so you can hold it in 1st or 2nd, whereas the computer might decide to upshift not knowing the traffic slowed again. Also true when a hill approaches. Why let the computer shift up to 4th, when you know a hill is just ahead and will require 3rd?

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post #6 of 14 (permalink) Old 07-18-2017, 04:37 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Philster View Post
Smoother = worse

Smoother in slicker weather = good, because some of the harshness and abrupt movement is removed mostly by slipping the clutches. In slick weather, clutch life sacrificed for your life, almost literally.

For example, if you drive a manual, and you want super smooth accel and gear changes, you do this by slipping (wearing) the clutch. You can amaze your friends, and make them think you're the best manual trans driver ever (Wow, such a smooooth shifter!), but to do so, you will slip your clutch (more than is needed), and clutch wear is the price to pay.

The gearbox in "All Weather Mode" puts safety and smoothness first. After all, a little clutch wear will help keep you from disrupting traction with sudden bursts of power hitting the wheels. Solution? Slip the clutch. Now now... it might do this by taming the throttle reaction, but news flash: This results in more clutch slip, because low power output requires slow/slipping clutch to move the car and not stall the engine.

Slipping the clutch is also how automated manuals creep in traffic. The best thing to do? Leave a gap; keep the car rolling. If you come to a point where you inch along, the best thing to do is stop. Let a gap open, and then accelerate so that the trans in in gear. It this always possible? No... you might have to inch along, because of how lanes merge or some jerk drives, but your goal should be to be in gear or not in gear. Inching along is accomplished by... slipping the clutch.

>Drive in Natural mode if Dynamic is too aggressive for the finer control needed in traffic.

>Avoid All Weather Mode unless you need the computer to slip the clutches to smooth out the power delivery and keep your tires planted and safe

>Don't inch along in traffic. Drive in a way that lets the trans stay in gear; leave a gap so you stay in gear; inch along as conditions warrant, but look to minimize it. Stop fully if you need to stop the inching/slipping, then use the gap to stay in gear.

>Shift yourself if you'd like, because you can see the road ahead and the computer cannot, so you can hold it in 1st or 2nd, whereas the computer might decide to upshift not knowing the traffic slowed again. Also true when a hill approaches. Why let the computer shift up to 4th, when you know a hill is just ahead and will require 3rd?

.

I think this is correct, based on the feel, but do we know for sure that's what's happening with the clutches in "A" mode?
Or is it more the magic of throttle mapping that makes it feel this way?

With an automatic it's the torque converter that is "slipping", but that's not material to the discussion here.

The advice is sound, regardless.
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post #7 of 14 (permalink) Old 07-18-2017, 06:14 PM
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I don't have to deal with much stop and go driving compared to when I lived in SF Bay Area. When dealing with slow traffic I agree with the advice in the first posts. Stay out of A mode.Use N or D mode in Manual lets you control when the clutches are fully engaged or slipping. When in 1st gear the clutches will disengage when putting on the brakes so I try to keep a bit of a gap behind the car in front and make a point of getting the RPMS above the idle range and moving the car or put on the brakes and stop. As far as I can determine when you put on the brakes it does disengage the clutch but soon as you take your foot off the brake it will start engaging it again. It also seems that once you go into 2nd the clutches stay engaged so if you drive along slowly in 2nd (and the traffic speed allows that) you are better than staying in first as long as you don't lug the engine. I don't know this for a fact (in second the clutches are fully engaged and not slipping) but perhaps one of our experts like Jamie can chime in. I haven't tried putting the car in N mode when doing a long stop and than back in gear once it gets moving....but if you had to deal with many longer stops, that might make sense.

As a side comment....have any of you replaced your clutch yet through normal use? Haven't heard of any replacements in the US but perhaps the cars that would have more mileage on them in Europe (since the car was sold there earlier) might start needing replacement first. In any case it seems the clutches are pretty long lived....at least I don't hear of them going in very small amount of miles. I would think that owners of cars subjected to lots of congested traffic driving would be the first change outs if that was an issue...maybe we don't have to be concerned.

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post #8 of 14 (permalink) Old 04-01-2019, 11:50 AM
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I have been meaning to ask...when manoeuvring my car about say into my garage I find it difficult to creep along, I find I have to get a certain amount of revs up to move the car then it lurches a bit and stops so I have to give more gas. Is this how others find it at very low speeds, often its hard to judge exactly when and how much power is going to be put through to the drive train. My G 1750 didn't do this at all, in fact in first it would creep with no foot on the gas, why doesn't the 4C have a creep mode in 1st gear?

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post #9 of 14 (permalink) Old 04-01-2019, 12:31 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by goldmax View Post
I have been meaning to ask...when manoeuvring my car about say into my garage I find it difficult to creep along, I find I have to get a certain amount of revs up to move the car then it lurches a bit and stops so I have to give more gas. Is this how others find it at very low speeds, often its hard to judge exactly when and how much power is going to be put through to the drive train. My G 1750 didn't do this at all, in fact in first it would creep with no foot on the gas, why doesn't the 4C have a creep mode in 1st gear?
as stated in the owner's manual, the car doesn't engage the trans when you let off the brake. You have to give some gas. In fact, on a hill, you'll roll backwards lol.
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post #10 of 14 (permalink) Old 04-01-2019, 01:03 PM
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My wife only drives it in A mode, so someday, maybe I'll get to buy replacement clutches. BTDT in Corvette world and it's the price we pay. I like A mode for heavy urban use as well not just for the smooth shifts but also for the power cut. If I'm in downtown Chicago traffic, it's just easier to drive in "Camry mode". Ours is filling a "basic transportation" role and mixed in heavily with the other vehicles 3/4 of the year--it's out of warranty now.

My other computer is a Cray.
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