Sluggish acceleration
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This is a discussion on Sluggish acceleration within the General Maintenance, Troubleshooting & Accidents. forums, part of the Tech & Modifying & General Repairs category; Let me start off by saying I know next to nothing about cars. I bought my '04 WRX automatic used ...

  1. #1
    Registered User
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    Oct 2009

    Red face Sluggish acceleration

    Let me start off by saying I know next to nothing about cars. I bought my '04 WRX automatic used 2 years ago because I like the way it drives in the Minnesota winters.

    From day 1 it's always accelerated extremely slow, I always compare it to a forklift. Once it breaks 20-25mph it feels like the turbo kicks in and takes off. I drove a Ford Escort before this and it would easily take my subby the first 100ft any day (that's just sad). Is this normal for a stock wrx or do I have a problem? I've asked techs when I bring it in for an oil change and they say it's working just fine.

    I'm a 28 year old father of 2, this is my daily driver. I also ride a Honda RC-51 superbike, just to show that I do love speed. Should I be looking into finding a new tech or modding my wrx?

    *I did try searching, but a lot of these posts make no sense to me. It seems like 90% of forum users have manual transmissions.
    Last edited by MNbeardie; 10-12-2009 at 11:55 PM. Reason: update

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  3. #2
    Registered User Lavid2002's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    sup buddy.

    I am new to this whole wr thing too, but I can say that my acceleration is the same as yours. Once I break about 2,500 rpm and the turbo kicks in it is like a rocket, but that first bit of acceleration is very, very lame. Im sue there are some mods you can do to the car to help reduce this. I am no professional...but I beleive this is called "Turbo Lag' The time it takes for the engine to wind up the turbo and start pumping air into the engine to speed it up. I was suprized by this "Slow" period too. This is one advantage superchargers have over turbochargers, they run off a motor (I forget whether its electric, or if it runs off a belt onnected to the motor...I dont know. Either way the second yo hit the gas it winds it up and kicks the motor in the ass...while with the turbo, it takes a minute for the exhaust to wind up the fan and start feeding the engine.

    Im not 100% sure but thats what I THINK it is. I drive a manual and I experience the same thing. I wouldnt call it super slow, but compared to what the car does when im at .5 MPa and 5,000 rpm it is slow.

  4. #3
    Registered User Dim3s's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Waukesha, Wisconsin
    if you purchased it used it could be the tune on the vehicle (low boost, slow in the start - could be a winter tune etc.) a new tune with increased boost would be probably the easiest way to go.

    on my sti it is fairly slow at the start as well but driving heavy from a 4k launch or above changes everything. on an automatic vehicle it's very hard to control those things thats why most enthusiasts prefer manual.

    also just for knowledge - a tune is like a electrical map to the car that tells it how much gas and air is coming in and how much power it should put out. thats the simplest way of putting it.
    Last edited by Dim3s; 10-15-2009 at 01:10 AM.

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