Jump to content

Custom Search




Welcome to the Ford C-MAX Energi Forum


Sign In  Log in with Facebook

Create Account
Welcome to the Ford C-MAX Energi Forum. You must register to create topics or post in our community - but don't worry this is a simple free process that requires minimal information for you to signup. Be apart of Ford C-MAX Energi Forum by signing in or creating an account.
  • Start new topics and reply to others
  • Subscribe to topics and forums to get email updates
  • Get your own profile page and make new friends
  • Send personal messages to other members
  • Create a photo album and post images. . .more.
Click here to create an account now.
 
Guest Message by DevFuse

Get you C-MAX Energi Registered in the official Ford Authorized Registry. More here.


Photo
- - - - -

How best to use L (low) gear...suggestions?


  • Please log in to reply
53 replies to this topic

#1 OFFLINE   JeanLucBlue

JeanLucBlue

    New Member

  • C-MAX Energi Member
  • Pip
  • 104 posts
  • Region:U.S. Pacific Coast
  • LocationSan Diego
  • My C-MAX:Decline
  • Current Vehicle:2013 CMAX ENERGI

Posted 06 December 2014 - 09:48 AM

All,

 

I have been using my Low gear when driving in the city (most of my driving) and I do like it and it seems to keep my charge up at a constant level that I don't notice any loss when driving home from work. I change into Low gear as I approach a light or stop sign. Yeah!

 

My question is, after reading the users manual, it says I can shift into Low gear 'at any vehicle speed' (pg 214). Is this true? Has anyone done this? I have only been going about 30-35 mph or less when I use it. Has anyone done this at higher speeds? Like on an off-ramp or?

 

Also, how fast can you go while in Low gear? and keep at that speed? Again, I am looking at the 30-35 MPH range as I drive thru the city. Be nice to leave it in in Low gear all the time if I don't 'burn' out anything.

 

Thanks everyone...I know I will learn more from your responses too that I did not think of! Go Energi!









Lose this advertisement by becoming a member. Click here to create a free account.

#2 OFFLINE   rbort

rbort

    Energi Member

  • C-MAX Energi Member
  • PipPip
  • 4,080 posts
  • Region:U.S. Northeast
  • LocationFranklin, MA
  • My C-MAX:2017
  • Current Vehicle:Cmax Energi Titanium with Moonroof

Posted 06 December 2014 - 09:58 AM

I used to do this more often, but I've not been as much.  Low gear gives you almost max regen all the time when you take your foot off the accelerator however with your foot on the pedal it behaves like D.  You can be in low in any speed and I still use it to slow down off the highway taking the on-ramp if I need to, in other words if I didn't take my foot off the accelerator early enough to allow the car to slow down naturally in D.

 

To answer your questions you can shift at any speed to L.  But if you drive in L all the time every time you let up on the accelerator the car will try to slow down hard with regen, and your speed will drop.  Its not efficient to drive yo-yo speeds up and back down in L, keeping it in D and having a more constant speed will save more energy.  In other words don't slow down if you don't need to and speed back up.

 

L gear is a crutch for precise braking, you can accomplish the came thing if you learn to brake lightly and not dig into the friction pads.  If there is a question of how hard you can brake, L is a good bet and it will give you that close to maximum regen braking without pads.  If you have time to brake then just use the brake lightly to come to a stop rather than shifting to L and back out to D during the stop.

 

A good place to use L would be on a steep hill to prevent the car from speeding up.  On shallower hills use hill assist.  Maintaining a constant speed down the hill by using L or hill assist will get you better mpge numbers for the same distance travelled, i.e. less battery used due to recharge and less friction loss that comes with higher speeds.

 

-=>Raja.


Edited by rbort, 06 December 2014 - 10:01 AM.


#3 OFFLINE   Tom_NC_1

Tom_NC_1

    Energi Member

  • C-MAX Energi Member
  • PipPip
  • 1,065 posts
  • Region:U.S. Southern Atlantic
  • LocationNC
  • My C-MAX:Decline
  • Current Vehicle:2013 C-Max Energi 302a

Posted 06 December 2014 - 11:33 AM

All,

 

I have been using my Low gear when driving in the city (most of my driving) and I do like it and it seems to keep my charge up at a constant level that I don't notice any loss when driving home from work. I change into Low gear as I approach a light or stop sign. Yeah!

 

My question is, after reading the users manual, it says I can shift into Low gear 'at any vehicle speed' (pg 214). Is this true? Has anyone done this? I have only been going about 30-35 mph or less when I use it. Has anyone done this at higher speeds? Like on an off-ramp or?

 

Also, how fast can you go while in Low gear? and keep at that speed? Again, I am looking at the 30-35 MPH range as I drive thru the city. Be nice to leave it in in Low gear all the time if I don't 'burn' out anything.

 

Thanks everyone...I know I will learn more from your responses too that I did not think of! Go Energi!

Using the term low gear for the L position the shifter is not altogether accurate. Although the manual indicates that the L position is called (Low) it is not actually a gear. That is why shifting to L at any speed is ok. The only affect as Raja says is that taking your foot off the accelerator causes a higher level  of regen resulting in greater de-acceleration.  While pressing the accelerator the car will perform the same as if it were in D.  


  • dr61 likes this

#4 OFFLINE   jdbob

jdbob

    Techo Geek

  • C-MAX Energi Member
  • PipPip
  • 597 posts
  • Region:U.S. Pacific Coast
  • LocationJohn Day, Oregon
  • Current Vehicle:2013 C-Max Energi

Posted 06 December 2014 - 11:36 AM

L gear doesn't actually change any gears so you can use it any speed. Other manufacturers call it B (for braking) which is more accurate since it increases regenerative braking when you let off the go pedal.

 

I use it around town as well. Since you still need the brakes to do a full stop at a stop sign it's probably more useful if you live somewhere with roundabouts instead of stop signs.

 

The other place where I found it to be useful was when I went down to California earlier this year and had to deal with stop and go traffic on the freeways. With some practice I could use it for one-pedal driving and rarely needed to use the brake pedal.



#5 OFFLINE   viajero

viajero

    Energi Member

  • C-MAX Energi Member
  • PipPip
  • 579 posts
  • Region:U.S. Southern Plains
  • LocationAustin TX
  • Current Vehicle:C-Max Energi

Posted 06 December 2014 - 12:59 PM

On the Energi, L doesn't do anything different at all except when you let of the accelerator and coast (It's different in the C-Max hybrid).  I drive in L all the time.  If I don't want to slow down so suddenly, I don't lift my foot all the way off the gas.  It took about a week of practice to get used to it.

 

If you start out with a full charge and use L, sometimes the ICE will start and rev wildly.  I start in D and drive a couple blocks, then switch to L.



#6 OFFLINE   rbort

rbort

    Energi Member

  • C-MAX Energi Member
  • PipPip
  • 4,080 posts
  • Region:U.S. Northeast
  • LocationFranklin, MA
  • My C-MAX:2017
  • Current Vehicle:Cmax Energi Titanium with Moonroof

Posted 06 December 2014 - 02:01 PM

If you start out with a full charge and use L, sometimes the ICE will start and rev wildly.  I start in D and drive a couple blocks, then switch to L.

 

That is because the battery is full and high levels of regen are not allowed until the battery voltage drops enough so it won't go over peak allowable by the software.

 

-=>Raja.



#7 OFFLINE   RubyMax

RubyMax

    Energi Member

  • C-MAX Energi Member
  • PipPip
  • 679 posts
  • Region:U.S. Great Lakes
  • LocationNortheast Ohio
  • My C-MAX:2013
  • Current Vehicle:C-Max Energi, 302A, Pano; Focus Electric

Posted 07 December 2014 - 07:37 AM

The other place where I found it to be useful was when I went down to California earlier this year and had to deal with stop and go traffic on the freeways. With some practice I could use it for one-pedal driving and rarely needed to use the brake pedal.


Just remember, drivers behind you aren't aware that you are braking if they don't see brake lights.
  • hybridbear likes this

#8 OFFLINE   jdbob

jdbob

    Techo Geek

  • C-MAX Energi Member
  • PipPip
  • 597 posts
  • Region:U.S. Pacific Coast
  • LocationJohn Day, Oregon
  • Current Vehicle:2013 C-Max Energi

Posted 07 December 2014 - 11:28 AM

Just remember, drivers behind you aren't aware that you are braking if they don't see brake lights.

 

No different than when people down-shift their manual transmissions.


  • fotomoto likes this

#9 OFFLINE   rbort

rbort

    Energi Member

  • C-MAX Energi Member
  • PipPip
  • 4,080 posts
  • Region:U.S. Northeast
  • LocationFranklin, MA
  • My C-MAX:2017
  • Current Vehicle:Cmax Energi Titanium with Moonroof

Posted 07 December 2014 - 03:50 PM

Maybe so but just keep in mind how far people are behind you so you don't get rear ended unnecessarily.

 

-=>Raja.



#10 OFFLINE   GaryG

GaryG

    Energi Member

  • Inactive
  • PipPip
  • 841 posts
  • Region:U.S. Southern Atlantic
  • LocationJupiter, FL
  • My C-MAX:Decline
  • Current Vehicle:'09 FEHL, '13 C-Max Energi 302A

Posted 07 December 2014 - 04:28 PM

No different than when people down-shift their manual transmissions.

 

I agree, I've gone 120,000 miles using L in my 2 FEH's and my NRG and never once did anyone come close to hitting me from behind. In addition, my '67 GT500 and other 4 speed cars I've owned, I've downshifted heavily to save the brakes. It someone hits you in the rear, they're following way to close and it's their fault.

 

Gary



#11 OFFLINE   viajero

viajero

    Energi Member

  • C-MAX Energi Member
  • PipPip
  • 579 posts
  • Region:U.S. Southern Plains
  • LocationAustin TX
  • Current Vehicle:C-Max Energi

Posted 07 December 2014 - 06:20 PM

That is because the battery is full and high levels of regen are not allowed until the battery voltage drops enough so it won't go over peak allowable by the software.

 

-=>Raja.

 

The trouble is this will happen even if I'm accelerating away from the charging station, taking energy out of the battery.  I suspect it's just a case they never thought about or tested.



#12 OFFLINE   rbort

rbort

    Energi Member

  • C-MAX Energi Member
  • PipPip
  • 4,080 posts
  • Region:U.S. Northeast
  • LocationFranklin, MA
  • My C-MAX:2017
  • Current Vehicle:Cmax Energi Titanium with Moonroof

Posted 07 December 2014 - 09:24 PM

Well I never stepped on the accelerator in L on purpose, only used it for braking and a couple of times I tried to use it for braking down a shallow hill pebble road to keep the speed down after a full charge and the engine started.  After that I found if I hold the brake its OK it won't start but cannot shift it into L going down a hill right after charging or to use for a stop at a light or a stop sign.  Gotta wait at least until the battery drops to 99% to be sure its OK to use it without starting the engine.

 

-=>Raja.



#13 OFFLINE   stevedebi

stevedebi

    Energi Member

  • C-MAX Energi Member
  • PipPip
  • 1,123 posts
  • Region:U.S. Pacific Coast
  • LocationLos Angeles
  • My C-MAX:2014
  • Current Vehicle:2016 C-Max Energi 302A Pkg

Posted 08 December 2014 - 10:49 AM

All,

 

I have been using my Low gear when driving in the city (most of my driving) and I do like it and it seems to keep my charge up at a constant level that I don't notice any loss when driving home from work. I change into Low gear as I approach a light or stop sign. Yeah!

 

My question is, after reading the users manual, it says I can shift into Low gear 'at any vehicle speed' (pg 214). Is this true? Has anyone done this? I have only been going about 30-35 mph or less when I use it. Has anyone done this at higher speeds? Like on an off-ramp or?

 

Also, how fast can you go while in Low gear? and keep at that speed? Again, I am looking at the 30-35 MPH range as I drive thru the city. Be nice to leave it in in Low gear all the time if I don't 'burn' out anything.

 

Thanks everyone...I know I will learn more from your responses too that I did not think of! Go Energi!

I use L for extreme braking on the freeway. If I see traffic slowing suddenly, I switch to Auto mode, switch to L, and let the HVB recover energy. Then I switch back to EV Later when the battery symbol is showing discharge. This can add a percentage or two to the reserve.

 

When leaving the freeway, as soon as I get on the off ramp, I switch to EV Now and use L. This recovers kinetic energy for the HVB. I've seen my mile counter go up by a mile or two using this off ramp technique.

 

Other than those two times, I only use L when I'm on a downhill steep enough to need it for controlling speed.



#14 OFFLINE   rbort

rbort

    Energi Member

  • C-MAX Energi Member
  • PipPip
  • 4,080 posts
  • Region:U.S. Northeast
  • LocationFranklin, MA
  • My C-MAX:2017
  • Current Vehicle:Cmax Energi Titanium with Moonroof

Posted 08 December 2014 - 07:42 PM

The car will capture any regen from L, D, hill assist or braking in any mode.  To be clear, Steve is switching to Auto mode or EV now (doesn't matter) and back to EV later to KEEP any regen he gets from slowing down, otherwise if you remain in EV later the whole time the system will just use it as bonus energy right away and not give you a higher HVB save value.

 

-=>Raja. 


Edited by rbort, 08 December 2014 - 07:42 PM.

  • Smiling Jack likes this

#15 OFFLINE   stevedebi

stevedebi

    Energi Member

  • C-MAX Energi Member
  • PipPip
  • 1,123 posts
  • Region:U.S. Pacific Coast
  • LocationLos Angeles
  • My C-MAX:2014
  • Current Vehicle:2016 C-Max Energi 302A Pkg

Posted 09 December 2014 - 09:17 AM

The car will capture any regen from L, D, hill assist or braking in any mode.  To be clear, Steve is switching to Auto mode or EV now (doesn't matter) and back to EV later to KEEP any regen he gets from slowing down, otherwise if you remain in EV later the whole time the system will just use it as bonus energy right away and not give you a higher HVB save value.

 

-=>Raja. 

Raja,

Thanks for the clarification. Yes, I'm storing up the energy for later use.



#16 OFFLINE   JeanLucBlue

JeanLucBlue

    New Member

  • C-MAX Energi Member
  • Pip
  • 104 posts
  • Region:U.S. Pacific Coast
  • LocationSan Diego
  • My C-MAX:Decline
  • Current Vehicle:2013 CMAX ENERGI

Posted 11 December 2014 - 10:25 AM

THANK YOU everyone! I just learned that the Low gear is not a gear after all!!! It now makes sense!  I know I can always depend on the people here to help me out.



#17 OFFLINE   tonyd

tonyd

    New Member

  • C-MAX Energi Member
  • Pip
  • 52 posts
  • Region:U.S. Pacific Coast
  • LocationAuburn, CA
  • Current Vehicle:C-Max Energi

Posted 13 December 2014 - 06:08 PM

Does anyone know what actually happens when you shift to L.  Is it just a change in a software value that determines the current delivered to the battery by the MG when the car is coasting ?  Clearly when the car is being powered by the MG or the ICE, shifting to L makes no difference.



#18 OFFLINE   jdbob

jdbob

    Techo Geek

  • C-MAX Energi Member
  • PipPip
  • 597 posts
  • Region:U.S. Pacific Coast
  • LocationJohn Day, Oregon
  • Current Vehicle:2013 C-Max Energi

Posted 13 December 2014 - 07:09 PM

The only thing I've found is the same in a couple of documents:

 

"When the transmission range is in the low position, the transmission increases regenerative braking when the accelerator pedal is released to provide an engine braking feeling and increased battery charging."


  • dr61 likes this

#19 OFFLINE   rbort

rbort

    Energi Member

  • C-MAX Energi Member
  • PipPip
  • 4,080 posts
  • Region:U.S. Northeast
  • LocationFranklin, MA
  • My C-MAX:2017
  • Current Vehicle:Cmax Energi Titanium with Moonroof

Posted 13 December 2014 - 08:00 PM

Another good place to shift to L, at the last 20 feet pulling into your garage.  Creep speed is only 1/2 that of D, so you get to pull in slower and not have to friction brake as hard in the end.

 

-=>Raja.



#20 OFFLINE   stevedebi

stevedebi

    Energi Member

  • C-MAX Energi Member
  • PipPip
  • 1,123 posts
  • Region:U.S. Pacific Coast
  • LocationLos Angeles
  • My C-MAX:2014
  • Current Vehicle:2016 C-Max Energi 302A Pkg

Posted 15 December 2014 - 09:39 AM

Does anyone know what actually happens when you shift to L.  Is it just a change in a software value that determines the current delivered to the battery by the MG when the car is coasting ?  Clearly when the car is being powered by the MG or the ICE, shifting to L makes no difference.

Yes, that is basically it, the software is programmed to put energy back into the battery more rapidly, resulting in a sharper speed reduction.










0 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users

Privacy Policy TERMS OF SERVICE ·