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Old 08-26-2009, 08:28 PM   #7
Sival will become famous soon enough
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Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: Québec, Canada
Posts: 213

2007 ION-3 Sedan
Default Re: Motor Trend: Penske Hopes to "Use a Competitor

Originally Posted by chops View Post
After hearing all the horror stories about the VTi, I am extremely reluctant to trust any CVT, no matter what anyone says. I would presume that those who have actually experienced VTi issues firsthand would be even more reluctant.

I may be wrong, and I hope I am...but I still believe that the next Saturn with a CVT will be a tough sell.
Nissan has put CVTs in hundreds of thousands of its cars (millions even) since a few years back, more if you include the Japanese market. They haven't had more problems with them than with traditional automatics... hey they're probably more reliable than Honda automatics, but that's not saying much.

Anyway, I think the main problem with CVTs is that they sound weird to a lot of people. People expect their speed in acceleration to increase with noise from the engine, but with a CVT, it tends to put the engine at a given speed and change the ratio as it accelerates. That means that the noise remains more or less constant, and leads to people believing the car is accelerating slower than it actually is, even when it is doing so faster than similar cars with traditional automatics. For instance, motortrend once did a comparison between 4 automatic compacts, the Lancer, the Civic, the Sentra and the Elantra*. The Lancer and Sentra both reached 60 mph in about half a second faster than the Civic and a full second faster than the Elantra. But on many review sites, reviewers tend to downplay the acceleration of automatic Sentras and 2.0L Lancer and to praise that of automatic Civics and Elantras (ex: consumerguide gives 5 to both automatic Civic, Sentra and Elantra but a dismal 3 to the Lancer (the fastest in the test!)).



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