Originally Posted by wago
+1. tho i didn't come from a manual, i have plenty of videogame driving under my belt. built my own cockpit with wheel/pedal set for Forza 2. i drive in tip for 95% of the time. D for parking lots; tip w/ stick for lazy driving; tip w/ paddles for bad weather, heavy traffic, & on-ramps
i rarely use S mode. fwiw, my car's got over 24k miles in about 14 months, and i've driven at least 23.5k of those miles.
i also find i can get better mpgs with tip driving. tranny wont shift into 6th unti you hit about 50 in D under most conditions, but you can upshift at 45, and it'll hold all the way down to 40 before it downshifts to 5th.
the lesson, and it can be applied to paddles & stick the same:
- know that your shifts in tip, unless you're a god, will be rougher. your foot doesn't have the calibration with your hand to shift as smooth as the computer. the jerky shifts are usually between 1st & 3rd.
- there is a delay between your shift command and the tranny actually doing it. assume between half to a full second delay, or 500 rpm non-spirited to 1000 rpm spirited.
- if you forget to shift, either up or down, the tranny will shift itself to prevent red-lining (on acceleration) and stalling (on deceleration). also, the car won't let you shift itself into a over-rev or stall situation. it's german. it's smart.
- for non-spirited driving, upshift between 2k and 3k rpm. when you get to your desired speed, upshift one more time so you're cruising between 1600 & 2k rpm. note that at this rpm, you'll have virtually no usable passing power. if you don't mind accelerating slowly at the start, you can accelerate without downshifting, but ugh, it's slow.
- for spirited driving, i usually try to shift between 4k and 5k. on very rare occasions, i may let it climb up to 6k, but only in 1st and *maybe* 2nd gear.
- non-spirited downshifting: before you drop below 1500, but not before 2k. or, just let the car downshift on its own. it'll be smoother.
- spirited downshifting: ah, i usually downshift in the low 2ks, sometimes in the high 2ks. this usually puts the engine in the mid 3ks in the lower gear, and i don't like to force the engine to jump much higher than that.
- to get the most out of passing in tip mode, from cruising (holding speed @ 1600-2k rpm), downshift once while holding the same road speed, check that the road is clear for your pass, then downshift one more time & give it some gas. when you hit 5k rpm, upshift, then upshift again once you reach your max comfortable passing speed.
essentially, like a manual but no clutch. take note of what the tranny does in D (for non-spirited) and S (for spirited), and do that. the biggest thing to get used to is the shifting delay.