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Old 09-07-2003, 04:52 PM
Registered User
Join Date: Apr 2002
Location: Melbourne, Australia
Posts: 280
Unhappy down shifting auto

I find that my 1994 Euro C180 is not inclined to down shift as easily as some other cars I drive like the Camry and Corolla and Nissan Pulsar. Even a Volvo I once a while get to drive changes quickly. Occurs often going uphill, especially with passengers. The auto won't change down even if I step hard on the accel. Sometimes it changes after a few seconds at near kickdown stage, but not yet. Sometimes it changes long before this. Many times, I do have to kick down before it changes and its a bother to do this. I know it becomes normal after some time in the car, but don't think the kickdown system is really necessary, thats why we have an auto box in the first place. The system should know at what stage it has to change down to cope with the extra load and gradient without the driver telling it to change by kicking down. Is there any alternative? Change the box to a 5 speed? Or change the car? I still like this car as it gives me a great sense of security and comfort knowing that it will protect me to a greater extent than the usual tinbox car would. I paid a bigger price for it, but its worth it. Next change would be another Benz, maybe a later model C like the 1998 model before I venture to the 2001.
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Old 09-08-2003, 12:07 PM
Registered User
Join Date: Mar 2003
Location: Maryland
Posts: 23
Try a K&N air filter. I put one in my C230 and it changed the way it drove. There is less load on your engine whith a free flow air filter so it deosn't have to fight itself to get going. It changed the shift points on my car as it probably will with yours. It downshifts much earlier.

Synthetic oil and keeping it in tune will help too by giving you a few extra HP's.
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Old 09-08-2003, 12:25 PM
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Join Date: Sep 2002
Location: Kingsport, TN
Posts: 375
Hi Hocky,

there is an article on stevebfl' s website that was just highlighted on another thread a day or two ago about the proper functioning of an automatic transmission, starting with the right vacuum and the adjustment possibilities. You might want to search under his name to find that. There is probably some adjustment possible, assuming the car is tuned properly.
I sometimes use the shiftlever to select 3, if I don't like the low rpms I'm in.

Good luck

Reinhard Kreutzer
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Old 09-08-2003, 02:35 PM
Registered User
Join Date: Oct 2002
Location: Vanersborg, Sweden
Posts: 99
Hi Hocky,

My 1984 500 SEL tranny did exactly what You describe a couple of weeks ago. It turned out to the linkage arm that operates the bowden cable, that sits on the back of the engine, that jumped off for some reason. I just snapped it back on and voila.

Good luck/ Mikael
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Old 09-08-2003, 08:37 PM
Registered User
Join Date: Jul 2003
Location: Montreal, Quebec
Posts: 508
Forget about the K&N. it will not do anything to solve your problem.
Mickael (previous post) has pointed you exactly at the problem. You may also want to have a look a the transmission modulator (vacuum operated). These 2 thigs a almost no costs.
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