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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
It is unclear to me whether I can safely shift from D (Drive) to L (Low) on the fly without tearing up the transmission.

Why would I want to do this?

Let's say I am driving down the interstate and start to enter a mountainous region and I don't want the trans going back and forth from 6th to 5th gear. So to prevent this I need to put it in L and ratchet down to 5th.

Question: do I have to stop on the side of the interstate and put it in L or can I, going 60 mph, just pull it into L and adjust from there?

Thanks.
 

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dont know if its recommended as when you shift to L, it starts at the lowest gear i believe ??? although i tried shifting from L5 to D with no problem but not the other way around, maybe yes if your running below 20mph. Other vehicle with manumatics does give you the option to shift on the fly, the Acadia for me doesnt fit on that category.
 

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I have had this type of electronic shifting in my last car as well. It is fine to shift into L on the fly. It will put it in the gear it thinks it needs to be in. Then you can shift from there. I use it when going down hills so that I don't have to ride the brakes. I just go into the next lower gear.
 

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I drive in the mountains quite a bit. I use L most of the time. When you change to L from D, it typically drops 2 gears (6th to 4th, 5th to 3rd).
 

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No problem...I pull the shift lever back into "L" at 70+ all the time. The transmission will lock into 5th gear; very helpful in hilly country. This is similar to what happens with other vehs that have an overdrive button on the end of the trans lever...it takes the trans out of OD and shifts to the next lower gear. I have had not problems downshifting into "L" at any speed. HTH.
 

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fresno0318 said:
No problem...I pull the shift lever back into "L" at 70+ all the time. The transmission will lock into 5th gear; very helpful in hilly country. This is similar to what happens with other vehs that have an overdrive button on the end of the trans lever...it takes the trans out of OD and shifts to the next lower gear. I have had not problems downshifting into "L" at any speed. HTH.
At 70+....Okay, I'm thinking that's probably not a good idea, but I could be mistaken.

I also down shift in my GMC van when I'm climbing a steep hill or going down a steep hill and don't want to ride the brakes, but never at 70+. Just my nickel's worth. ;)
 

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It is totally electronically controlled and you can shift down to L at any time. If you are going too fast for a downshift, then the electronics will not do anything and you will stay in 6th. Of course, if that happens, you drive too fast. :)

When you shift into L, the transmission shifts down into a lower gear to give you the ability to accelerate quickly. This will be 1 or 2 gears depending on your speed at the time. This is very handy for when you are driving and want to pass or quickly pick up speed. It gets you down into a lower gear without waiting on the transmission.

Both my other cars have something similar. They have a little overdrive button on the side of the shift lever to essential shift down from 4th gear to 3rd gear for passing. The Acadia's L is better because it will downshift for you no matter what gear you are in.

One note: The L is not a manual shifter. It is a way to downshift by moving from D to L, and also is a way to set the maximum gear that the automatic transmission will be in. You can run the Acadia in L all the time and leave it in 6th gear and it will basically be the same as being in D. Then you can change your max gear by simply using the toggle switch on the side.

The only drawback to the L position is that it does not automatically shift down for you when breaking. When in D, if you are going down a long hill or a mountain pass and are riding the breaks, the Acadia will sense you are riding the breaks and will down shift into a lower gear so that the motor will help hold you back. This will not happen in L as it is giving you the control of the max gear.

I personally love the L gear when driving between 40-50 and am in heavy traffic. This really helps keep the RPMs up in a range that I can control the car much easier than waiting on the tranny to shift.
 

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big bear craig said:
It is perfectly ok.
That's why I'm here!! To learn from the pro's... still not gonna down shift at that speed. But at least I learned I can if I want to and it won't hurt my baby....Which I still don't have...for crying out loud!!
 

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Hopefully you will get it soon! I think you will be extremely pleased once you get it. I have been thrilled with mine and I'm a bit picky (OK, OCD too). I have yet to tow my boat with it yet but today is supposed to be a nice day so I may take it out just to see how it handles.

Shifting into L is no problem at any speed. The computer won't let you make a mistake and it is very helpful when you want to do a little spirited driving. Well, as spirited as a 3.6l trying to lug around 5000+lbs can get. ;D
 

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I live in kansas and yes we do have hills and wind and i shift it a lot on the highway at 70+ m.p.h. and it just goes to the next lower gear. Maybe after the trans flash it will be better for me.
 

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I use the L function on the hills in Seattle. I leave it in 1 or 2 and the downhill decents are smooth and very controlled without riding the brakes.
 

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You have got to be kidding me.

Seriously?

What's next, "can I adjust my rearview mirror while driving, or do I have to pull over to adjust it?"
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
thanks to all for your help. just pulled into L while going about 55 and it showed up in L6 with no problem.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
toasterover i must assume you are young. in old days if you moved from d to l at 50 mph, one would strip the gears out and need new trans!
 

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KarolsAcadia said:
fresno0318 said:
No problem...I pull the shift lever back into "L" at 70+ all the time. The transmission will lock into 5th gear; very helpful in hilly country. This is similar to what happens with other vehs that have an overdrive button on the end of the trans lever...it takes the trans out of OD and shifts to the next lower gear. I have had not problems downshifting into "L" at any speed. HTH.
At 70+....Okay, I'm thinking that's probably not a good idea, but I could be mistaken.

I also down shift in my GMC van when I'm climbing a steep hill or going down a steep hill and don't want to ride the brakes, but never at 70+. Just my nickel's worth. ;)
You are mistaken.

It's fine.
 

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hsw said:
toasterover i must assume you are young. in old days if you moved from d to l at 50 mph, one would strip the gears out and need new trans!
In the old days, you also had to modulate the brake pedal with your foot to avoid locking them in an emergency (say hello to ABS), and have really good upper arm strength to turn the wheel when idle. My personal favorite is the bladder on the left-side of the drivers' footwell you had to step on to squirt wiper fluid.

I continue to marvel at the amount of people who cannot be bothered to do something as simple as read the manual.


For those who can't be bothered; most modern computer-controlled transmissions won't let you do anything potentially damaging, let alone stupid in regards to downshifting.
 

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NY_Joe said:
KarolsAcadia said:
fresno0318 said:
No problem...I pull the shift lever back into "L" at 70+ all the time. The transmission will lock into 5th gear; very helpful in hilly country. This is similar to what happens with other vehs that have an overdrive button on the end of the trans lever...it takes the trans out of OD and shifts to the next lower gear. I have had not problems downshifting into "L" at any speed. HTH.
At 70+....Okay, I'm thinking that's probably not a good idea, but I could be mistaken.

I also down shift in my GMC van when I'm climbing a steep hill or going down a steep hill and don't want to ride the brakes, but never at 70+. Just my nickel's worth. ;)
You are mistaken.

It's fine.


Thanks NY_Joe I appreciate all the help and advice...big bear craig let me know it was just fine as well. :thumb: Thanks... bbc


KarolsAcadia said:
big bear craig said:
It is perfectly ok.
That's why I'm here!! To learn from the pro's... still not gonna down shift at that speed. But at least I learned I can if I want to and it won't hurt my baby....Which I still don't have...for crying out loud!!
 

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Just gotta add since it gave me a minor (almost) heart attack at the time. I dropped my car into Park at about 65 and then promptly shifted into Reverse. Fortunately, the car ignored me. :cheers:
 
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