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Auto Transmission - Shift Shock

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  • Auto Transmission - Shift Shock

    I've read about this shift shock on the forums but nothing in this site. Saw this posted on a Facebook group and thought it might be relevant.

    My car doesn't seem to suffer from it the 1,300km I've driven it.

  • #2
    Havnt had that in the 5,000km yet..... Its been pretty smooth so far.
    To me the only 'downside' to the "smart transmission" is when going downhill (when i ride the brakes) doing 70ish and it downshifts too far and revs to over 3,000rpm.... I fear the turbo will wear prematurely..... So I flick the paddle shifter up to compensate.


    • #3
      I think the down shift when going downhill is a feature. Less likely to cook the brakes and this is something I generally do when driving a manual. Also, down shifting won't affect the turbo, you're not generating boost imho


      • #4
        Originally posted by Matt2016 View Post
        Havnt had that in the 5,000km yet..... Its been pretty smooth so far.
        To me the only 'downside' to the "smart transmission" is when going downhill (when i ride the brakes) doing 70ish and it downshifts too far and revs to over 3,000rpm.... I fear the turbo will wear prematurely..... So I flick the paddle shifter up to compensate.
        Hi Matt, I think I have the same issue too. This happened to me when I was driving from Blackheath to Katoomba. While travelling at 70km/h -ish, when I was just about to go downhill, the transmission suddenly (probably detecting a reduction of RPM due to steep incline) shifts down too much until it felt like 3rd gear. This is potentially dangerous if the road is slippery, or if there was a vehicle close behind. I also highlighted this "smart transmission" issue in an earlier thread 'Engine Braking'.

        i found a way to "minimise" this effect by maintaining speed at least for the initial downhill, although it doesn't work all the time. I know it sounds crazy because many times we just want to go slow downhill for engine braking or when we're towing. I hope Toyota could provide a fix for this (Hello Toyota Australia, you read this?) , ECU re-programming whatever it may be.
        Last edited by Kiat; 26-06-2016, 08:19 PM.


        • #5
          Sent my car for service, They said its a built-in feature and entirely normal


          • #6
            The "SHIFT SHOCK" issue is quite common in the Philippines Fortuner. The fortuners in the Philippines are made in Indonesia rather than Thailand. They have fortuners with the GD2's 2.4 diesel and that might be the case. There is a possibility that their gearing is different over there but I will ask a few questions and see what their diff: ratio numbers are. There was a transmission software upgrade recently and there were no complaints after that.
            Last edited by cheekydonkey; 18-08-2016, 10:41 PM.


            • #7
              I have tried to have Toyota address this issue in my 2015 Fortuner and the experience has been most unsatisfactory. So bad in fact that I would recommend that potential owners do not purchase a Fortuner because of the issue itself, and also because of the attitude and approach of Toyota Australia to the issue. In summary I'll describe what happened.

              The issue ..
              On steepish downslopes and the vehicle is coasting down at around 80 km/hr (in automatic drive mode). Any slight touch of the brake will cause the vehicle to suddenly down shift (with resultant slow down) to what feels like 3rd gear (around 3500 rpm) and sometimes to what feels like 2nd gear (4500 rpm). Then the vehicle cannot be induced by attempted acceleration to move up through the gears until the vehicle reaches the bottom of the downslope. As mentioned by a previous contributor, under certain circumstances (eg a vehicle behind you) this behaviour could be quite dangerous. Not to mention the 'shock' to the engine and transmission.

              This has been reported on a number of occasions to the dealer with an eventual request for a new transmission (as has happened overseas). The dealer's service manager stated that he would do an analytical test on the vehicle and provide the results to Toyota. I requested that I accompany the service manager on the test. Request denied. The 'test' was done and the results provided to Toyota. Supposedly their technical department then analysed the results and stated that this behaviour was 'normal' and within 'design intent'. I then requested to view the report and the results. Request denied. I then requested to be provided with a technical explanation (by someone from the technical department) of how this behaviour could be described as 'normal'. Request denied.

              So, we have situation where there was supposedly a 'test' at which I was not allowed to be present, a report and set of 'results' that I couldn't view, and an analysis outcome that I cannot confirm. That's transparency for you!

              So, there are a number of issues here. First, I cannot confirm that a proper test was done to produce the event that I have described. Second, even if the event was produced, then to describe this as 'normal' completely beggars belief and is suggestive of an attempt to whitewash the issue. Third, as I understand it some Fortuners experience this issue and others don't. How can both experiences be 'normal'?

              I will be writing more about this, but in the mean time I would hope that other effected Fortuner or HiLux owners contact Toyota and demand a satisfactory solution. Feel free to contact me as well. Complaints by sufficient numbers of owners will help the cause.


              • #8
                I have a 2015 GX auto.

                My transmission behaves as described above (downshifts when brakes applied going downhill) - but I am very happy with this feature.

                I suppose it's hard for manufacturers to set things up in a way that will please everyone, but all I can say is that I like the way it operates.
                Last edited by mrh460; 07-07-2017, 03:11 PM.
                2015 GX auto / Genuine steel bull bar, snorkel and tow package / Ultimate suspension / Rhino sliders / BFG KO2s / ORS drawers ...


                • #9
                  I've experienced this issue of engine braking before. Where are you based? and what dealership did you go to? as a consumer you have the right to view any testing they carry out in the vehicle. I'd take it to another dealership, make sure that all of your firmware updates have been completed at your servicing.


                  • #10
                    You've described engine braking.

                    Unfortunately, some people will like it, some people won't. I like it, I have driven manuals most my life and prefer to engine brake my way down a long steep hill than to ride my brakes all the way down. If I'm driving an auto down the same hill, if the car's features allow it, I will select a gear that results in engine braking.


                    • #11
                      True. But there is engine braking, and there is engine-BRAKING! There are a number of points here ..
                      1 .. I've been driving manual and automatic cars, 4WDs, and trucks (many years ago) for over 40 years.
                      2 .. The event is not just confined to long steep hills. It can occur on relatively short steepish (but not overly) downslopes.
                      3 .. On my Fortuner there is a sudden and instantaneous downshift from 6th gear to what feels like 3rd gear (3500rpm) (or sometimes 2nd? .. 4500rpm). The gear change is not progressive, and the resultant gear does not feel appropriate for the slope or the previous speed i.e. the slowing effect is too severe. There is quite a 'shock' (i.e.a sudden and large increase in rpm) to the engine and transmission. That can't be good for mechanical longevity.
                      4 .. Once in this gear the vehicle cannot be induced out of it by acceleration until the bottom of the slope i.e the transmission holds the vehicle in 3rd despite the wishes of the driver. That's not normal.
                      5 .. I have not driven or know of another vehicle with a similar gearbox setup that behaves in this way. The suddenness, extent and subsequent gear-retaining behaviour could not be regarded as 'normal'.
                      6 .. There appears to be some variation in the way that various Fortuners behave. Perhaps this is due to the so-called AI-Shift Control. It could also be due to errors in the sensors or the software interpretation of the 'drivers intention support control' (whatever that specifically is?). I have attached the document that Toyota provided.
                      7 ,, This 'AI-Shift Control' is a very convenient way for Toyota to abrogate responsibility under warranty. If the AI is supposedly learning from the driver then the vehicle behaviour must be due to the driver's previous behaviour. Thus, any vehicle behaviour that even roughly matches the 'design intent' of the document must be 'normal'. I would challenge any reasonable driver to interpret the behaviour of my vehicle as 'normal'.
                      8.. The response (or lack of it) from Toyota has been disgraceful. Refer to the previous contribution for their behaviour. This will be the last new Toyota I will purchase.
                      9 .. My wife is the usual driver. She now slows down at the top of hills to avoid the event. It is not 'normal' for the behaviour of the vehicle to dictate the behaviour of the driver.
                      Attached Files


                      • #12
                        Forget to respond to 'thehunteroz'. All updates have been done. On the issue of so-called consumer rights re new vehicle warranties, please note the following




                        • #13
                          Gary2 - What you've described now doesn't sound like how my Fortuner behaves. The car is equipped with sensors that describe the angle it is in. Perhaps yours is overly sensitive (or stuffed).


                          • #14
                            Hi @Gary2

                            Downshifting to a gear which results in the engine RPM hitting 4500 is not normal, and I would be pressing for this to be replicated in another Fortuner to see if it does this. As said above, your current dealer sounds rubbish. Go to another one and see if you receive a more helpful and transparent experience.

                            On mine, the downshifting only ever resulted in the car selecting a gear which had the engine up between 3000-3200 RPM, and I have seen the frequency of downshifting drop the more KM the vehicle gets, cant explain this!

                            Once engine braking has commenced, there is a reluctance to up-shift which I find if you accelerate more than normal will cause the gear to up-shift. Alternatively, use 'manual mode' and see if this prevents it downshifting.




                            • #15
                              Gday guys. Digging up an old thread here but we took delivery of 2018 Fortuna and Gary2 comments describe exactly what we experienced. 80 ish kph on steep hill. As I started to apply brake major downshift, seemed like 6 to 3rd and at least over 3500 rpm. Didn’t want to upshift for quite some time. Do we think this is normal? Sounds like the overseas issue from 2016 that was fixed with an ecm update. I can’t believe it is by design to change down so savagely. Going to speak to my local dealer tomorrow but interested on your thoughts. Thanks.