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Old 08-19-1999, 06:38 AM
Jerry McG
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I'm not sure what anyone else thinks about MB's adaptive shift point technology, but my experience has been something of a mixed bag. I'm into my second W210, fisrt being a '97 E320, and my current '98 E430 Sport. Both cars tend to shift from 1st to second very early, ensuring that the engine is never quite on the power curve when you need it to be, especially after crawling through traffic or when not quite fully warmed up. It also never seems to want to downshift unless the accelerator pedal is floored, and that may not be what you're looking for. The default shift pattern seems to be suited for Granny and Gramps.

On the other hand, sometimes it surprizes you and downshifts earlier. When that happens, it seems better coordinated with the power band.

The only option seems to be manually shifting when you need to keep the revs up, but I read somewhere that you can overide the logic by leaving it in 4th gear. Is this right? Is there a software update available to change this to a less docile shift pattern?
Old 08-19-1999, 09:44 PM
Registered User
Join Date: Mar 1999
Location: Suwanee, GA, USA
Posts: 4,712
MB Doc will know more about this than me but I have read that the car will see how you normally drive and attempt to adapt to that style.


Old 08-19-1999, 10:10 PM
Join Date: Mar 1999
Location: Tucker, Ga USA
Posts: 12,153
Since the keyword is adaptive on the trans shift controls the computer is looking for a certain style of driving. If you are always agressive while driving then the ECU should adapt to that style but if you vary your styles then it will default to a different program. It is supposed to be able to adapt to 6 different driving patterns & styles.
Old 08-20-1999, 06:18 PM
Jerry McG
Posts: n/a
ZKeyword indeed, cause I'm the one who has to do the adapting! Where I live it's necessary to drive rather calmly most of the time, but when I need to tromp on it to pass or merge the thing generally shifts out of first far too eartly and then I have to row it with the shift lever. But, then again, very ocasionally it shifts as I like it too. Is it true you can override the logic by keeping it in fourth rather than "D"?
Old 08-22-1999, 12:16 AM
Posts: n/a
There is no way of manually overriding the system. The shifting adaptation occurs within the 6 different driving conditions to optimize the shift quality of the transmission.The control unit has the ability to watch the engagement of the transmission shift members to determine if the shift can be optimized by varying fill pressures, rates and timing etc.. The more that a specific driving condition is repeated during a shift, the more the transmission can continue to fine tune the shift.This is why mostly everyone states that the transmission adapts itself to the driver. It is better stated that the transmission adapts itself to the driving conditions in which it is driven. If you want to "optimize" the transmission to a different style of driving, drive that way more often. It does not lose the other adaptations that it has performed while driven another way.
Old 08-22-1999, 07:58 AM
Jerry McG
Posts: n/a
RBM, thanks for the informative reply. My two W210s seem to continually default to the "Granny" mode. In our area there's a lot of low speed cruising necessary, but not necessarily stop & go. However, situations arise where it shifts too early, like when needing to hold a low gear for a bit or when passing. There appears to be no "logic" to the shift logic. Simple one gear kickdowns are delayed and must often be achieved by flooring the pedal, which then results in a two gear downshift, engine screaming, etc. But, then again, sopmetinmes it DOESN'T do this and it shifts properly. Both of my cars did this, so I don't think it's a fault of this car, more of a characteristic. I find myself manually shifting the thing often.
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