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Discussion Starter #1
Does anyone know how to use the 'L' gear in the transmission.

Can you downshift out of drive to low and at what speed? I have been given mixed opinions as to what speed you can downshift from D to L and would prefer not to blow out the transmission. Thanks in advance for any response.
 

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I believe you can down shift at any speed and it will put you into manual shift mode. I could be wrong though since on my test drives I never tried this out.
 

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It will pop you into a gear appropriate to your speed. Additionally, it will override any attempt you make to shift into to high or too low a gear. You don't have to worry about doing any damage.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
thanks for your replies. The mechanics at the dealership didn't have the same answer. One said you have to slow down to around 35 mph before you go into 'L' and another said do it around/under 50. I guess I'll give it the old college try and see what happens. Its a little confusing since you only have the 'D' and 'L', I'm not use to that kind of transmission lever. At least its under warranty.
 

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I'm pretty sure they would not give you a way to 'break' the transmission - at least, not that easily. :) as you say, it's under warranty...

I put mine from D to M at a number of speeds - 20, 40, 50 - and it just leaves the car in whatever gear it was in, but then lets you up/downshift from there. I haven't done any agressive downshifting for either acceleration or for hard braking - I'm still going easy on it until it breaks in.
 

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luvmyacadia said:
thanks for your replies. The mechanics at the dealership didn't have the same answer. One said you have to slow down to around 35 mph before you go into 'L' and another said do it around/under 50. I guess I'll give it the old college try and see what happens. Its a little confusing since you only have the 'D' and 'L', I'm not use to that kind of transmission lever. At least its under warranty.
Ahh, I see...to be honest, I have not shifted it below 50, so maybe there is a limit. However, I don't think it will let you break it. Older cars used to physically lock the shift lever...I think the Acadia would simply not shift for you.

From the manual (this is the only section that I could find:

When you shift from DRIVE (D) to LOW (L), the
transmission will shift to a pre-determined
lower gear range. The highest gear available for
this pre-determined range is displayed next to
the L in the DIC. See Driver Information Center
(DIC) on page 232 and DIC Operation and
Displays (With DIC Buttons) on page 233 or DIC
Operation and Displays (Without DIC Buttons)
on page 239 for more information. The number
displayed in the DIC is the highest gear that
the transmission will be allowed to operate in.
However, your vehicle can automatically shift to
lower gears as required by various driving
conditions. This means that all gears below that
number are available. For example, when
FOURTH (4) is shown next to the L, FIRST (1)
through FOURTH (4) gears are automatically
shifted by the vehicle. You cannot shift into
FIFTH (5) until the plus (+) button is used or you
shift back into DRIVE (D) mode.
While in LOW (L), the transmission will prevent
shifting to a lower gear range if the engine speed
is too high for the gear range you are trying to
select. You have a brief period of time to slow the
vehicle speed. If vehicle speed is not reduced
within the timeframe allowed, the lower gear range
attempted will not be available. The highest
possible gear that is allowed for that engine speed
will display next to the L in the DIC. Try again
to slow the vehicle speed and press the minus (−)
button to the desired lower gear range.
 

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It can be shifted at any speed.

I have tried it in my 3 day sowning the vehicle.

The only thing that it does that Iwas confused aboutis explained above.

If you drive in L and are in say 4th and then come to a stop without downshifting, when you restart it stays with the marker at "4". However, it will start out in first gear. Aove states it willnot allow you to go past "4" though. Kinda weird that the indicator satys at 4 but the tranny drops back down to1st.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Somewhat confusing but at least its making sense now. I wonder why they did it that way. It seems like it would have been easier to use what I would consider a normal shifter that you could use to downshift more than one time. Oh well, as long as it works thats what counts. What I find interesting is that the guys at the dealership didn't really know the answer. I guess there aren't that many sold yet and they haven't had a lot of questions asked yet.
 

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This L is a programmable LIMIT much like those on older cars that had 4-speed automatics with "D 3 2 1" choices on the shifter. On those, if you selected 3, it would use gears 1,2 &3, but prevent shifting beyond that. Simiarly selecting 2 would only allow 1 & 2.

So if you're driving with a full load in mountains and the tranny keeps shifting up and down from 6 to 5 having trouble maintaining speed, you can shift to L and set the limit to be 5...or 4 until the upshift/downshift stops occuring.

In snow or ice, if your climbing a steep incline, you may want to set it to not shift out of 2 or 3 so there will be no downshifting to cause a tire spin. While going down a steep hill you may want to keep it in a lower gear to use the engine as a brake to keep the speed down, so you may set the limit to 3rd or 4th gear.
 

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The computerized transmission avoids the need for more shifter positions and lets you make selections with the electronic +/- button. Nice setup, it'll just take a little relearning for us old fashioned gear heads!
 

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Discussion Starter #11
I am getting the hang of it. I'll say one thing for the Acadia, it sure has a lot of technological advances. Makes you wonder if an extended warranty might be in order since so much of the vehicle depends on electronics.l
 

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luvmyacadia...you had the same thought I did when I bought the Acadia. With there being so many electronics (meaning so many relays and switches that can decide to stop working), I decided to go with the GMCC 72/100 plan. I've owned some "electronically advanced" vehicles in the past and there were always electrical gremlins that would rear their ugly heads as the cars aged. Without a warranty that covers all that stuff, I would just say screw it....but now I can wait for a few things to go south and then plunk down my $100 deductible and have them all fixed!
And the best thing is that if I sell it before 72/100, the warranty makes it much more attractive than a non-warrantied Acadia.
Yours,
Pipes
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Pipes,

Just curious, what did they charge you for the warranty? I see you have an AWD. I have a FWD so I wonder if there is a difference in what they charge. Thanks!
 

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I concur with an earlier review outside this forum that said the Acadia lacked steering wheel shift paddles (like Corvettes, Porsches, and some Audis) or a more tactile up-down shift on the center console, versus the +/- button on the shifter.
 
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