The Official 2015 WRX & STi Thread - Page 34
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This is a discussion on The Official 2015 WRX & STi Thread within the New Cars/Prototypes Forums forums, part of the Community - Meet other Enthusiasts category; Hey all, new member here, not a Subaru owner (currently) though we have a couple in our family and I'm ...

  1. #496
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    Hey all, new member here, not a Subaru owner (currently) though we have a couple in our family and I'm contemplating buying a WRX or STI once the new 2015s are out and the performance numbers are in. I would just like to offer my perspective on the whole CVT thing based on my own experience. I currently own a 2013 Nissan Altima 3.5 SV which has a CVT. I've put just over 18,000 miles on the car, purchased new in October 2012. Previously I owned a 2000 Maxima 3.0 with a 5 speed manual. I was excited to switch to the Altima when I test drove it as it felt a good deal quicker than my old car (270HP vs. 222HP). Gas mileage and nice amenities such as remote start, power everything, backup camera, ipod integration, yada yada were also selling points. Gas mileage can be good if you drive it gently, I've seen highway mileage over 30 when driving for long stretches, mixed mileage can be anywhere fro 20-27 though,depending on how much stop and go traffic you see. Also the car only needs 87 octane so you can save some additional money on gas there. However, shortly after purchasing the car I began to notice the acceleration wasn't as good as I first thought.

    Sometimes the CVT just doesn't quite understand what you want it to do. I'll give an example. Let's say you need to pass someone on the highway very quickly. If you put your foot down you may get the necessary acceleration to pass, or you can get a noticeable lag. The engine revs up almost right away, but the transmission just doesn't put the power to the ground until it figures out the right gear ratio. Sometimes this can take a split second, other times you can literally count out two whole seconds before the car gets moving. Another issue I have with the acceleration is that since the car is front wheel drive and it only has brake-based traction control it is not very forgiving at low speeds when applying throttle. The traction control is extremely aggressive in that when it senses wheelspin it will do one of two things: 1) apply brakes to get the wheels to stop spinning 2) disengage the transmission so that ZERO power is put to the ground. You can imagine how stupid it looks to other drivers as my engine is wailing away and my car is just sitting next to them.

    Another problem I have with the CVT is that within the last 1000 miles or so it started slipping under certain conditions. There is a known issue with the 9th generation CVT that has been developed for 2013 and newer model year Altimas (and Pathfinders) where the torque converter will lock up repeatedly when applying a small amount of throttle at low RPM say in stop and go traffic or especially when going up a slight incline. Go ahead and check the Altima forums out there, there are a lot of people having this issue. Nissan doesn't appear to have a definite answer for this problem, unfortunately. Lots of owners report taking their cars to the dealership to have the issue investigated and come back with no answers, or a never-ending list of repairs. Some people say they've had their TCU reprogrammed, torque converter replaced, and CVT replaced (all at separate times) and still have the issue. Sounds like a design flaw if you ask me.

    My car is due to have its transmission replaced but the CVT is on back-order so I've been waiting for over a month now. Talk about frustrating. I still think Nissan has good designs but I honestly don't think I will ever buy another CVT equipped vehicle for as long as I have the option to get anything else. Same goes for front wheel drive for that matter. For these reasons I am seriously contemplating selling my car after the transmission is replaced and buying a WRX or STI.

    I hope my experience can shed some light on the CVT issue for anyone contemplating buying a vehicle with one, I strongly advise against it. Gas mileage is nice, but really no better than other new auto trans designs that feature 7 or more gears, or even a good manual that is driven properly for that matter.

    Cheers! Oh, and Merry Christmas to you all as well.

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  3. #497
    Registered User JaySin's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by techguymaxc View Post
    Hey all, new member here, not a Subaru owner (currently) though we have a couple in our family and I'm contemplating buying a WRX or STI once the new 2015s are out and the performance numbers are in. I would just like to offer my perspective on the whole CVT thing based on my own experience. I currently own a 2013 Nissan Altima 3.5 SV which has a CVT. I've put just over 18,000 miles on the car, purchased new in October 2012. Previously I owned a 2000 Maxima 3.0 with a 5 speed manual. I was excited to switch to the Altima when I test drove it as it felt a good deal quicker than my old car (270HP vs. 222HP). Gas mileage and nice amenities such as remote start, power everything, backup camera, ipod integration, yada yada were also selling points. Gas mileage can be good if you drive it gently, I've seen highway mileage over 30 when driving for long stretches, mixed mileage can be anywhere fro 20-27 though,depending on how much stop and go traffic you see. Also the car only needs 87 octane so you can save some additional money on gas there. However, shortly after purchasing the car I began to notice the acceleration wasn't as good as I first thought.

    Sometimes the CVT just doesn't quite understand what you want it to do. I'll give an example. Let's say you need to pass someone on the highway very quickly. If you put your foot down you may get the necessary acceleration to pass, or you can get a noticeable lag. The engine revs up almost right away, but the transmission just doesn't put the power to the ground until it figures out the right gear ratio. Sometimes this can take a split second, other times you can literally count out two whole seconds before the car gets moving. Another issue I have with the acceleration is that since the car is front wheel drive and it only has brake-based traction control it is not very forgiving at low speeds when applying throttle. The traction control is extremely aggressive in that when it senses wheelspin it will do one of two things: 1) apply brakes to get the wheels to stop spinning 2) disengage the transmission so that ZERO power is put to the ground. You can imagine how stupid it looks to other drivers as my engine is wailing away and my car is just sitting next to them.

    Another problem I have with the CVT is that within the last 1000 miles or so it started slipping under certain conditions. There is a known issue with the 9th generation CVT that has been developed for 2013 and newer model year Altimas (and Pathfinders) where the torque converter will lock up repeatedly when applying a small amount of throttle at low RPM say in stop and go traffic or especially when going up a slight incline. Go ahead and check the Altima forums out there, there are a lot of people having this issue. Nissan doesn't appear to have a definite answer for this problem, unfortunately. Lots of owners report taking their cars to the dealership to have the issue investigated and come back with no answers, or a never-ending list of repairs. Some people say they've had their TCU reprogrammed, torque converter replaced, and CVT replaced (all at separate times) and still have the issue. Sounds like a design flaw if you ask me.

    My car is due to have its transmission replaced but the CVT is on back-order so I've been waiting for over a month now. Talk about frustrating. I still think Nissan has good designs but I honestly don't think I will ever buy another CVT equipped vehicle for as long as I have the option to get anything else. Same goes for front wheel drive for that matter. For these reasons I am seriously contemplating selling my car after the transmission is replaced and buying a WRX or STI.

    I hope my experience can shed some light on the CVT issue for anyone contemplating buying a vehicle with one, I strongly advise against it. Gas mileage is nice, but really no better than other new auto trans designs that feature 7 or more gears, or even a good manual that is driven properly for that matter.

    Cheers! Oh, and Merry Christmas to you all as well.
    Thanks and I can appreciate the information, but still...Nissan does not equal Subaru. Also...factoring in a turbo and also the Sport and Sport Plus modes in the new WRX may alleviate or change the behavior completely. It's not really a fair comparison. Will I ever buy a Nissan CVT? Probably not. I've heard all there is to hear. Will I test drive and possibly buy the new WRX with one? It's a good possibility...so far. If multiple problems arise and I don't want to deal with it anymore...I sell it. With that said...the new design is growing on me and being that I had '08 4EAT WRX...it's all an improvement from there. I'm willing to give it a try.

  4. #498
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    Quote Originally Posted by JaySin View Post
    Thanks and I can appreciate the information, but still...Nissan does not equal Subaru. Also...factoring in a turbo and also the Sport and Sport Plus modes in the new WRX may alleviate or change the behavior completely. It's not really a fair comparison. Will I ever buy a Nissan CVT? Probably not. I've heard all there is to hear. Will I test drive and possibly buy the new WRX with one? It's a good possibility...so far. If multiple problems arise and I don't want to deal with it anymore...I sell it. With that said...the new design is growing on me and being that I had '08 4EAT WRX...it's all an improvement from there. I'm willing to give it a try.
    Note: I was mistaken earlier when I said the CVT in my car is the 9th generation of CVT, it is in fact the 8th generation from a company named Jatco, who was spun off from Nissan in 1999. They are the world's number one supplier of CVTs. Jatco also lists Subaru as a customer. It is possible that the new WRX may have a Jatco CVT in it. If that turns out to be the case, I would strongly caution those considering purchasing to look at the manual model instead.

    There is a "sport" mode in my car too, as well as paddle shifters. That two second lag I mentioned earlier happens most often when using sport mode. I'm not saying things are definitely going to be the same with the WRX, but with the performance numbers we already have from the early previews and reviews that have come out, the manual model is definitely faster than the CVT. Traditionally, automatic transmissions are faster in a straight line than manual transmissions so for the CVT to be slower than the 6 speed manual I think that's a red flag right there.

    Another problem with CVTs is that they are very sensitive to heat. If you want to mod your car at all, the first mod you'll have to do is an oil cooler for your tranny, unless you don't mind your tranny grenading on you, of course. The Jatco CVT in my car (model CVT8HT) is rated to something like 270 lb/ft of torque, that's only a bit more than stock (258lb/ft), not much room for growth there.

    Here is a write-up on some of the issues with this particular model of CVT: The Nissan/JATCO CVT8HT - what went wrong? - Nissan Pathfinder Forum

  5. #499
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    I still have an issue with the design, now that the "OMG it's not the concept" furor has died down.

    I am not surprised that it isn't quite as aggressive as the concept. Nor that it bears a large resemblance to the current Impreza.

    I just don't get why the fenders are so mismatched. There's a nice high aggressive beltline for the front wheels, and the rear fender kinda doesn't have a beltline at all. There were actually some people on another forum wondering why it looked like the rear wheels are smaller than the fronts until I pointed this out to them.

    I hope it drives as well as these reviews are saying, but I still feel like I'm watching propaganda lol.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Calvinball View Post
    I still have an issue with the design, now that the "OMG it's not the concept" furor has died down.

    I am not surprised that it isn't quite as aggressive as the concept. Nor that it bears a large resemblance to the current Impreza.

    I just don't get why the fenders are so mismatched. There's a nice high aggressive beltline for the front wheels, and the rear fender kinda doesn't have a beltline at all. There were actually some people on another forum wondering why it looked like the rear wheels are smaller than the fronts until I pointed this out to them.

    I hope it drives as well as these reviews are saying, but I still feel like I'm watching propaganda lol.
    I think we all need to wait to see it in person to get a real idea of how it looks.
    If you're upset over someone elses opinions then the issue isn't with the person giving the opinion but rather yourself for taking it personal.

  7. #501
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    Quote Originally Posted by techguymaxc View Post
    Note: I was mistaken earlier when I said the CVT in my car is the 9th generation of CVT, it is in fact the 8th generation from a company named Jatco, who was spun off from Nissan in 1999. They are the world's number one supplier of CVTs. Jatco also lists Subaru as a customer. It is possible that the new WRX may have a Jatco CVT in it. If that turns out to be the case, I would strongly caution those considering purchasing to look at the manual model instead.

    There is a "sport" mode in my car too, as well as paddle shifters. That two second lag I mentioned earlier happens most often when using sport mode. I'm not saying things are definitely going to be the same with the WRX, but with the performance numbers we already have from the early previews and reviews that have come out, the manual model is definitely faster than the CVT. Traditionally, automatic transmissions are faster in a straight line than manual transmissions so for the CVT to be slower than the 6 speed manual I think that's a red flag right there.

    Another problem with CVTs is that they are very sensitive to heat. If you want to mod your car at all, the first mod you'll have to do is an oil cooler for your tranny, unless you don't mind your tranny grenading on you, of course. The Jatco CVT in my car (model CVT8HT) is rated to something like 270 lb/ft of torque, that's only a bit more than stock (258lb/ft), not much room for growth there.

    Here is a write-up on some of the issues with this particular model of CVT: The Nissan/JATCO CVT8HT - what went wrong? - Nissan Pathfinder Forum
    Hopefully Subaru's cvt is flawless.
    If you're upset over someone elses opinions then the issue isn't with the person giving the opinion but rather yourself for taking it personal.

  8. #502
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    Quote Originally Posted by Justanothername View Post
    I think we all need to wait to see it in person to get a real idea of how it looks.
    I try to do this as a policy. How it looks "on the road" is often a completely different ballgame, at least to my eye.
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  9. #503
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    Quote Originally Posted by RayfieldsWRX View Post
    I try to do this as a policy. How it looks "on the road" is often a completely different ballgame, at least to my eye.
    Agreed.
    If you're upset over someone elses opinions then the issue isn't with the person giving the opinion but rather yourself for taking it personal.

  10. #504
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    Quote Originally Posted by RayfieldsWRX View Post
    I try to do this as a policy. How it looks "on the road" is often a completely different ballgame, at least to my eye.
    Not for me, sadly. If a car looks fugly to me on paper (or a computer screen), seeing it in the metal never changes my mind.

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    According to DSport, the new Six Speed is both notchy and frustrating. Figures.

    Sent from my LG G2 using Tapatalk.

  12. #506
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    It's gone all ways, with me. When the new Dodge Dart was shown in pics, I was like "Wow, that's pretty sporty looking!". Then I saw it in person, and was kinda "meh". Other cars have come across the same to me in pics and person, and still others look hot to me when I finally see it for real, though I wasn't impressed with the photos. It's hard to tell the future from photos. Always in motion, the future is.
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  13. #507
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    Quote Originally Posted by stilletto View Post
    According to DSport, the new Six Speed is both notchy and frustrating. Figures.

    Sent from my LG G2 using Tapatalk.
    Hahaha, that's so funny. How can there be such differing opinions on it? The reviewer in this video...



    .... (which, to me, felt much more like an advert than a review) thought it was an AMAZING manual gearbox. I'll wait for more reviews before I decide who (whom?) to believe.

  14. #508
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    Guess it's frustrating during aggressive driving. I'm more inclined to believe it's not the greatest.

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    Last edited by stilletto; 12-18-2013 at 01:18 PM.

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    I just care about how it looks from behind the wheel, and its meh. Very slight increase over the outgoing model.
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