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      05-07-2012, 10:38 PM   #1
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DCT after a track day.

I usually drive around town pretty mellow in default auto mode, but when I go to the track, I shift manually, in S3 mode. I find S5/S6 too jerky and doesn't seem to shift much faster, if at all.

The next day, I notice is the DCT behaves very differently. After going for an HPDE, the DCT will hold gears much better, shift up later, and downshift sooner. It's like it learned my driving the previous day and it remembers it. It's in the same default setting, but drives much better now. The new M3 DCT seems to want to get to 7th gear as fast as possible compared to my 2008 car before the HPDE.

Just wondering if anyone else noticed this?

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      05-08-2012, 12:39 AM   #2
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The transmission remembers your style of driving and better suits the car for it. I believe it's called drivelogic.
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      05-08-2012, 01:07 AM   #3
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That's the adaptive transmission at work. The transmission 'adapts' to your driving style.
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      05-08-2012, 01:22 AM   #4
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I know it adapts, but I'm surprised how much it adapts and that it adapts in auto mode when I was driving in manual mode at the track. There's really a HUGE difference after the track day even in the default A3.
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      05-08-2012, 01:46 AM   #5
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It learns in minutes. I see the same just within a couple of minutes of getting on it. My 08 vw r32 does the same thing. Also the engine seems to pull harder and use more gas.
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      05-08-2012, 04:41 AM   #6
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      05-08-2012, 05:47 AM   #7
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Very cool. Interesting, because I never ever drive my car in auto mode, not even for brief errands. I find that the tendency of the transmission to shift up to higher gears as soon as possible drives me nuts--you find yourself in 6th gear at 40mph, coasting to a stoplight. Based on your experience, I guess driving the car pretty hard would reset the drive logic to hold gears longer, at least temporarily, but it wouldn't last long before it switched back to a super-conservative, MPG-maximizing mode. I don't drive like a crazy person around town, but I strongly prefer the gear-holding of a regular manual transmission or DCT in manual. That way, whatever speed you happen to be at, you're always in the correct gear to accelerate away quickly if necessary--there's no waiting for a kickdown. I guess I have control issues.

Ironically, I would have gotten the 6-speed manual, but I knew I would be tracking this car whenever time allows, so I opted for DCT instead. I just don't have enough self-confidence at this point in my HPDE experience to bang off two perfect heel-toe downshifts in rapid succession coming from 125+ mph under threshold braking into turn 1.

Your S3 vs. S5 experience on track surprises me. Next time out, try S5 or even S6/DSC off on a dry track under the right conditions. I think you'll be blown away by how instantaneous and satisfying full-throttle upshifts are at the higher reaches of the rev band.
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      05-08-2012, 06:36 AM   #8
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I use S4 at the track. You still get the rev matched down shifts so you aren't wasting your clutch discs but its not nearly as rough as S5. An S4 up/down shift won't upset the car in places where S5 would.

Not sure why you would use S3, that would upset the car more than using S5/6 on a downshift.
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      05-08-2012, 08:46 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bigjae1976 View Post
I use S4 at the track. You still get the rev matched down shifts so you aren't wasting your clutch discs but its not nearly as rough as S5. An S4 up/down shift won't upset the car in places where S5 would.

Not sure why you would use S3, that would upset the car more than using S5/6 on a downshift.
Do you mean upsetting the balance of the car if upshifting/downshifting mid-corner or with some steering input? S5/S6 upshifts on a straight shouldn't be an issue in terms of changing the balance of the car, but do you feel that S5/S6 downshifts negatively impact the car's balance under heavy braking even in a straight line? If so, that would imply that a well-done heel-toe downshift under braking in a manual transmission car is smoother than the rev-match of DCT.
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      05-08-2012, 08:48 AM   #10
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I wonder how long it takes to readjust to "city-mode"
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      05-08-2012, 09:13 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by paradocs98 View Post
Do you mean upsetting the balance of the car if upshifting/downshifting mid-corner or with some steering input? S5/S6 upshifts on a straight shouldn't be an issue in terms of changing the balance of the car, but do you feel that S5/S6 downshifts negatively impact the car's balance under heavy braking even in a straight line? If so, that would imply that a well-done heel-toe downshift under braking in a manual transmission car is smoother than the rev-match of DCT.
A downshift isn't as smooth in S5 as it is in S4. On a straight, no problem. I've ran into 2 scenarios where S4 works better.

1. Hard braking zone, S5 can cause the rear end to wiggle or wiggle more whereas S4 makes the car feel more settled.

2. MSR Houston has either a left/right or a triple left followed by a fast sweeper onto a long straight. When you enter into the sweeper, you're on full throttle but you still have to turn the car a little. An upshift in S5 can upset the car...S4 its buttery smooth with no drama.

No...DCT beats 6MT 100% of the time
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      05-08-2012, 09:21 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bigjae1976 View Post
I use S4 at the track. You still get the rev matched down shifts so you aren't wasting your clutch discs but its not nearly as rough as S5. An S4 up/down shift won't upset the car in places where S5 would.

Not sure why you would use S3, that would upset the car more than using S5/6 on a downshift.
I started using S3 because I simply forgot to change it back in the day. When driven hard, S3 does perfect rev matched downshifts, and upshifts are pretty fast without any sudden jerks during shifts. It's very seamless. My instructor, who had an E46 SMG was commenting on how smoothly the car upshifts. S5 was way to jerky when I tried it. I have used S4 and thought it was find too.

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      05-08-2012, 10:08 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by paradocs98 View Post
Do you mean upsetting the balance of the car if upshifting/downshifting mid-corner or with some steering input? S5/S6 upshifts on a straight shouldn't be an issue in terms of changing the balance of the car, but do you feel that S5/S6 downshifts negatively impact the car's balance under heavy braking even in a straight line? If so, that would imply that a well-done heel-toe downshift under braking in a manual transmission car is smoother than the rev-match of DCT.
I would use s6. I have driven a few m3's with DCT (granted the one i havedone the most laps in has 20 inch wheels on it which can affect the grip) but I Felt the downshifts were spot on in s6 mode. I would not think that the "more jerky" nature of the higher settings would affect the stability of the car on entry into a corner. The same goes for track out.
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      05-08-2012, 10:11 AM   #14
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Wow another argument for 6mt. DCT is powered by Skynet.

Pretty cool though, OP. I have heard that it is called drivelogic and is supposed to learn in one or two minutes of contrasting driving style.
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      05-08-2012, 12:45 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Arben72 View Post
The transmission remembers your style of driving and better suits the car for it. I believe it's called drivelogic.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rated ///M View Post
That's the adaptive transmission at work. The transmission 'adapts' to your driving style.
+1. BMW has been doing this for quite sometime now, great feature.
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      05-08-2012, 12:49 PM   #16
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I find s5-6 perfect, s3 is a tad to slow for my liking.
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      05-08-2012, 03:57 PM   #17
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Quote:
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I find s5-6 perfect, s3 is a tad to slow for my liking.
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      05-08-2012, 04:09 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MichaelMarsal View Post
I would use s6. I have driven a few m3's with DCT (granted the one i havedone the most laps in has 20 inch wheels on it which can affect the grip) but I Felt the downshifts were spot on in s6 mode. I would not think that the "more jerky" nature of the higher settings would affect the stability of the car on entry into a corner. The same goes for track out.
Thanks for your input. Very cool--we used to have Leh Keen on this forum until he sold his car for a GT3 RS, we may or may not have Ryan Dalziel on here (may be an impostor), and now we have you! It's great to get a pro's perspective on here. Try to check out the track/autocross section periodically so you can help sort the good info from the bad.
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      05-08-2012, 05:16 PM   #19
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im surprised you dont like s5/6. i think its the best level for dct
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      05-08-2012, 06:05 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aus View Post
I usually drive around town pretty mellow in default auto mode, but when I go to the track, I shift manually, in S3 mode. I find S5/S6 too jerky and doesn't seem to shift much faster, if at all.

The next day, I notice is the DCT behaves very differently. After going for an HPDE, the DCT will hold gears much better, shift up later, and downshift sooner. It's like it learned my driving the previous day and it remembers it. It's in the same default setting, but drives much better now. The new M3 DCT seems to want to get to 7th gear as fast as possible compared to my 2008 car before the HPDE.

Just wondering if anyone else noticed this?

.
Okay, thanks for this posting and people's responses!

Last Saturday I did my first track day, almost all of it in DCT (until the last two laps when I was ready to experiment). Driving home, I noticed that coming to red-light-stops, the transmission was aggressively downshifting. I figured it was still "hot" from the stresses of the day's driving.

But on Sunday, it was still high-revving. And today, on a stretch of downtown driving that I'm very familiar with at this point, the M3 was still leapfrogging gears to keep RPM's high. So I was wondering: "Wow, did I do something [bad] to the transmission?"

Apparently, not! It's behaving exactly like it's supposed to. And I'm loving every moment of it.
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      05-08-2012, 08:19 PM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MichaelMarsal View Post
I would use s6. I have driven a few m3's with DCT (granted the one i havedone the most laps in has 20 inch wheels on it which can affect the grip) but I Felt the downshifts were spot on in s6 mode. I would not think that the "more jerky" nature of the higher settings would affect the stability of the car on entry into a corner. The same goes for track out.
+1

I find anything below S5 too lazy for track use. In S6 the downshifts are just perfectly crisp IMO. I also discovered that DCT is quite smart as it does a butter smooth shift if the car is under lateral load, regardless of the setting. This is perfect to be able to upshift while cornering and not upset the car. Impressive technology .
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      05-08-2012, 08:24 PM   #22
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DCT after a track day?

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I joke..
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