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Discussion Starter #1
I thought about this the other day, while reading a post regarding the "release" sensation that the MO CVT gives when dropping below 20 MPH...

Nissan is marketing this as an urban SUV. In that kind of environment, it is more than likely that you will hover around 25/30 mph (city streets) in stop and go traffic. Isn't it a little strange that they would market for this kind of environment, with this kind of driving limitations, with a transmission that 'releases' at low speeds?

Also, the engine-braking when letting off around 30 mph is pretty significant, so you slow down quickly and your Murano really can't coast around a turn or close the distance between yourself and a few cars that made it through a light. You have to use the gas to move up, probably reaching above 20 before you have to brake again, and then your CVT releases and you lurch a bit, brake more...

Just seems strange that low-speed behavior wouldn't be as smooth as high speed behavior, and they're not marketing the MO as more of a 'highway cruising' vehicle.

Curse you, torque converter clutch piston. Curse you!
 

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Nissans marketing always leaves a lot to be desired but...I'm not sure I agree. Guess I am used to a manual transmission. I don't feel this lurch you are talking about in my MO, but I sure do in the Z! (drop the clutch and smash the little narrow up and down peddle :D) The CVT as well as an automatic has a torque converter. The TQs slip at low rpms and then engage pretty strongly. I had a grand prix that I rebuilt a transmission in and put in a higher rpm torque converter and shift kit (I think it was a turbohydromatic 250). Now that car would lurch. The MO in starting at low speeds feels smoother than my cherokee. In stopping I use Ds and it feels like a manual transmission. To me you get the best of a manual and an automatic in a CVT. I guess it is kind of a weird feeling though.

With that said, I think Nissan called it an Urban SUV based solely on it's unibody frame and underbody construction. You wouldn't want to take the MO off road unless you did a lot of changing underneath. I used to off-road in the Lincoln National Forest when I lived in NM years ago. But I built up a special truck just for that purpose. Tall narrow tires, steel rims, no computers, points, detroit locker on the front and limited slip on the rear. And I didn't care about the body getting dinged and scratched. Anyways, IMO the MO is just too beautiful to take off road so doing the mod work to be able to go off road would be ... I dunno wrong I guess. The MO should do wonderful in light snow and slippery conditions IE "Urban SUV". I don't think the CVT played into that marketing strategy at all. But who knows? I don't.

Just my 2 c.

:)
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Funny that there is similar confusion on FA about my post. I have to work on my explanation...

Anyhoo, I'm not referring to acceleration. Acceleration is smooth, absolutely. I'm referring to decceleration. Bring your MO down to about 30 mph (any way you want.. brake, engine brake..) and then let off the gas. Let her engine brake all the way down to 20 or 15 mph. According to a bunch of other owners, at this point you will feel what I called a lurch. It's more of a release. The engine-braking stops and your vehicle free-wheels.

Sometimes you feel this if you actually -brake- all the way down to 20/15 mph, and sometimes you don't. But I've always felt it while letting the vehicle slow itself down to this point.

So, basically, drive.. let your MO slow itself down to 0. You should feel the CVT release. It's .. an interesting feeling. Not BAD but less than silky smooth.
 

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Finally! LOL :eek: Guess I've been braking too hard to notice it. Helps when I'm on a hill too. I suspect that's the point where the CVT torque converter lets go. Up until that point it's braking on engine, feels solid so I would say the torque converter is fully engaged then at about 20 it unlocks. You can also see the engine rpms dip then jump up a tad. Yes from an offroading aspect that would be killer for me. Contrary to what you see in the movies, when I went off road it was slow going, picking your course precisely to avoid rock strikes on critical underbody components and rolling a rim lip etc. Not that it affects handling, just when you want a little braking without using the brakes it lets go.

In an urban AWD environment though, I don't think that will be a problem. Won't know till winter I guess. But just driving around town so far it hasn't bothered me. Didn't even notice it. :eek:

No, your explanation is just fine Doom. My understanding was the problem! Interesting feeling. Very different.
 

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I read somewhere that the torque converter locks at approximately 15 mph, so the lurk is from torque converter "unlocking". It is easily noticeable if you brake light. So far it did not bother me at all.

I love watching other cars brakes lights on continuously when driving downhill. I almost do not have to do anything. The MO does all the job!

Urban SUV? Who cares about what it is called. We love it!
 
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