Thoughts on the A8 Transmission and what mode do you use?

Discussion in 'Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat' started by HellcatSteve, Apr 21, 2016.

  1. HellcatSteve

    HellcatSteve Senior Hellcat Member

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    Coming from a 6 speed manual on my G37 to this automatic 8 speed on the Hellcat is really taking me a while to get used to. I can't seem to get used to how the car automatically downshifts pretty noticably as I'm coasting to a red light, and I don't like how the car seems to skip gears upshifting, like if you depress the gas pedal 1/4 of the way the car bogs because it has gone so quickly from 1st to 5th, but I don't want to stomp the pedal and have the car drop from 5th to 2nd. I usually drive with the street setting for the transmission because I don't like how in sport mode the car seems to not upshift past 5th when I'm cruising along at like 45-50 MPH on back roads, and when I let off the gas it feels like the car is hung in gear revving at a fairly high RPM.

    I'm curious to hear other people's thoughts on this and if anyone feels the same way as I do with the transmission on this car. I have settled on the street setting for the transmission, but I'm not really thrilled about the seemingly gear skips that happen so quickly as the car upshifts.
     
  2. Booky

    Booky Gold Member

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    For city driving, I personally like Track mode with the traction control completely turned off.

    I like that the Track mode holds the gears longer when I am driving around town.

    When I move onto highway driving, I switch into Sport mode with the traction control turned off.
     
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  3. BlackbirdWS6

    BlackbirdWS6 Gold Member

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    It will hold a gear in sport mode since it thinks you are looking to horse around so that's generally normal. Some folks who are used to driving a stick simply drive auto cars a little differently. Meaning an auto car will drive the smoothest with consistent throttle while accelerating. You are use to working the throttle more in your G37 since you are switching gears/blending the clutch engagement.

    Perhaps just use the paddles or gear selector and shift manually until you get more used to the trans.
     
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  4. BD2DBONE

    BD2DBONE Silver Member

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    I like the Track mode and leave it there all the time. I like the way it shifts and holds on to a lower gear. Makes the car 'ready to go'. Can you explain why you like the TC off though? I'm a little fearful of driving without it because I find tire spin with it. Thx.
     
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  5. DGatzby

    DGatzby Gold Member Hellcat Car Club HCC Charter Member Midwest Regional Pres.

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    I guess my butt is not that sensitive or mine does not do everything described. I am plenty proficient with a clutch, driven lots of cars with a manual, more motorcycles, and continue with motorcycles now.

    On the street with traffic, there is nothing much to do but sit back and blend, tranny stays in street, sometimes I even turn on the green leaf and go ECO. Mine NEVER bogs. If you think it "bogs", it may be pulling itself away from wheelspin? I do not believe it will skip gears up shifting. Really, you think yours is skipping up? I have noticed that after some tame driving it may be doing an adaptive learning trick and getting too mellow. Do you have all the TCM flash updates? Some noticed the downshifts before one of the flashes last year.

    This tranny especially behind the torque monster Hellcat engine is simply unbelievable IMO. Track mode simply turns the car into a near race machine. Track and Sport certainly allow the gears to hold longer, the pressure of the shifts are of the best in the world in Track. Only thing close is a Porsche auto, I drove a Cayman last year with their respected double clutch, it was impressive; buddy of mine uses them for racing, ours is even better. Sport seems to be a blend btw street and track, but a bit more like track. Notice in track (which I use 100% in auto mode on the road course) will bark an instant down shift and hold hit, with just a throttle blip! Sport seems to bark and snort more. Keeping it in track does bring on lots of shifting feelings, but IMO more like a manual. But in street, this thing could not be smoother or more enjoyable to drive.
     
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  6. Racist Cat

    Racist Cat Silver Member

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    I run my car in manual mode, and with TC full off.

    But, when I am driving this car, I am fully driving this car. I am not simply going from point a to b. I'm aggressively accelerating, I'm in tune with the car, I'm feeling for wheel slip, etc.
    My town has little traffic, and a population of around 6,000.

    I usually manually shift with the floor shifter. You can modulate the throttle like a manual if you want to, it doesn't get herky jerky like most autos.
     
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  7. Booky

    Booky Gold Member

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    The first thing I did when I got in my '03 Cobra or 2012 GT500 was to turn the traction control completely off.

    I put over 70K miles on those supercharged cars, so I am used to driving with the nannies off all the time.


    I would highly suggest leaving the TC on if you are not comfortable/experienced with a supercharged car.

    Things can get real ugly real fast if you mash that pedal to the floor and the rear end steps out on you. :oops:
     
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  8. Racist Cat

    Racist Cat Silver Member

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    Wish there was a way to make the TC be off every time. I'm gonna wear out that TC button.
     
  9. HellcatSteve

    HellcatSteve Senior Hellcat Member

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    Wow, many great replies here I appreciate the feedback. I will experiment with the different modes more today and try using a more consistent acceleration. I have started to notice that having better control of the gas pedal does aid in me controlling when the car will shift etc. I guess after 8 years of driving a 6 MT I just need to learn how to properly drive this 8 speed automatic.
     
  10. pinetreecat

    pinetreecat Gold Member

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    push the srt button, bring up "custom", select Sport mode for Transmission. On Engine, select either 500 or 700 (I use 700). Leave the traction and suspension settings in street. Try this for 500 miles. It will address most of the concerns you've had listed.

    Each time you start up the car, you have to put the mode back in to "custom". which is a pain. otherwise it will go to the Street modes (default)
     
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  11. TNCHARGER

    TNCHARGER SRT Hellcat Supporter Gold Supporting Member

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    In track mode the TC is reduced and stability at it's least functional setting so you have been without most of the traction control..
     
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  12. MuscleGarageLA

    MuscleGarageLA SRT Hellcat Supporter Gold Supporting Member

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    Get used to the car first. Take all the time you need. Stick with street/default. Once your comfort level expands and you get more familiar with the car then try out other modes and combinations to suit your driving habits/preferences. This car is quite a handful and needs utmost respect. However it is quite forgiving as well and well mannered on the road.

    That's the route I chose and i was driving the GT500 (Manual shift) and ZL1(auto) before this.

    Just my humble opinion. Enjoy the car and drive safe..!!!
     
    Last edited: Apr 22, 2016
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  13. Themip

    Themip Gold Member

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    I had same issue. Now I always put it in track mode and do the shifting myself. Best of both worlds. The shift points are exactly where I want them and when I want them. Probably ruins my gas mileage but let's be honest that's not why we bought these cars :D
     
  14. MattG

    MattG Gold Member Hellcat Car Club

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    Kept mine in default for a long time. you get all the gears in this mode.
    Sport mode and track mode cancels out the last two overdrive gears.
    Try paddle shifting in either and the display will tell you there is no more gears to upshift to. LOL
    Love it in track mode the most, the exhaust is open and the sound is like no other car out there.

    But also you will notice that when going down an incline or hill it will downshift for you ! Freakin Amazing.
    This is the most intelligent car i have ever owned.
    and yes in either sport or Track it will hold the gears till you get the rpm's up there and i have had mine give me a chirp when it upshifts a few times. Helps a lot when you are going into a curve and power through it. It holds the gear and you have more control of the car.
    But then the wife gets in the car, and i put it in default mode. She loves how quiet the car is and how smooth it shifts
    (Wink, wink)

    Have fun.

    Matt
     
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  15. huggytree

    huggytree Gold Member

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    im in sport transmission and street traction 99% of the time

    only reason to switch to street transmission is to get 8th gear when on the freeway

    i bought the car for its quick up/down shifts...i like how it jerks in sport mode....its how a 707hp car should feel in my opinion.....if i wanted slow reactions id buy a family car
     
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