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Thread: Ford's letter regarding the "PowerShift 6 Speed Operating Characteristics" Reply to Thread
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Topic Review (Newest First)
12-21-2015 06:58 AM
sailor "Different" works better when it is sold to a targeted audience who wants it, look at the success of the Prius. And that didn't sell well in it's first year as an economy car alone in a basic body/interior shared with the cheapest Toyota model here. New styling unique to it & more luxury sold it to people who would accept the different driving (and not much different unless you wanted to).

Hybrids/electrics work best when regenerative braking is used for example, but you can't put that into backing off the accelerator to any degree larger than the engine braking people are used to from their prev. cars. Needs to be part of the brake function, and it's preferred to be "invisible" to the user - even though a "step" between regenerative & friction braking is best so friction braking can be avoided unless necessary.

Dry clutch DCT is terrible at "creeping" by it's very nature, even though the cheapest/most economical type both to build & use compared to Wet clutch DCT. Torque converter automatic is fantastic at that function, but it's terrible to use it that way for MPG.

I read the pre-release plans for the DCT posted here that expected to use "shudder" as a warning for doing too much creeping (Getrag info., not Ford). In the end they decided to keep trying to make it work better for that, keeping only an overheating warning based on how it's used.

People know because it hasn't changed since the earliest types that you can wear out or "mess up" the clutch of a manual trans. car if driven wrong, automatics are sold to people who don't WANT to be worried about that! It's just a bad fit unless you can find a way to build it that doesn't have any oddities restricting it's use.

Add in other problems like the TCM failure modes and you get a lot more unhappy people, scared that any odd operation might mean it'll quit or do something worse than a "shudder" while driving.
12-21-2015 06:20 AM
mr_cassandra
Quote:
Originally Posted by sailor View Post
"Different" is acceptable while "Bad" isn't in the long run.

There were many bad automated manuals in Exotic cars before Ford took a chance on a DCT in a mass market car, thinking the tech. was good enough to have few poor acting ones by then. Many of those prev. ones were bad ALL the time in town, only OK on the open road.

These & CVT's should both have been sold on the differences & advantages instead of swept under the table as little different. The CVT's ended up neutered of their largest advantage (variable gearing) to have stepped operation to mimic regular transmission gears. This particular type DCT will prob. also be relegate to failed experiment status in the end, even if a different variation promoted differently could have worked with much fewer problems.
theres no question auto salesmen should be explaining this to each prospective buyer.
I think I've heard clunkiness complaints about the Nissan GTR Dual clutch.
At any major auto show you can see it in brand after brand from mundane to exotic.
Hard to figure but like you said different or bad, thats the key
12-21-2015 05:59 AM
sailor "Different" is acceptable while "Bad" isn't in the long run.

There were many bad automated manuals in Exotic cars before Ford took a chance on a DCT in a mass market car, thinking the tech. was good enough to have few poor acting ones by then. Many of those prev. ones were bad ALL the time in town, only OK on the open road.

These & CVT's should both have been sold on the differences & advantages instead of swept under the table as little different. The CVT's ended up neutered of their largest advantage (variable gearing) to have stepped operation to mimic regular transmission gears. This particular type DCT will prob. also be relegate to failed experiment status in the end, even if a different variation promoted differently could have worked with much fewer problems.
12-21-2015 05:11 AM
mr_cassandra
Quote:
Originally Posted by kd1659 View Post
You can write about the Powershift Tech and explain how it works and why it has the characteristics it does has all day and night . The botom line is the damn thing should not do what it does , no sugarcoating this issue . I love my focus but when it takes its notions to buck like a damn rodeo horse it pisses me off to no end . Ford needs to offer money back on these or let us trade for a paddle shift car ! No . !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
You have to remember that many Focus owners have never driven a dual clutch from another automaker and they have nothing to compare it to.
They also think that one should always trust 'experts'
12-21-2015 04:50 AM
kd1659
No Excuses

You can write about the Powershift Tech and explain how it works and why it has the characteristics it does has all day and night . The botom line is the damn thing should not do what it does , no sugarcoating this issue . I love my focus but when it takes its notions to buck like a damn rodeo horse it pisses me off to no end . Ford needs to offer money back on these or let us trade for a paddle shift car ! No . !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
10-06-2015 02:57 PM
Pedro255 Wow! Just picked up my 2012/10,500mile Kia Ce'ed at the weekend and having driven 200 miles I can say it is a huge improvement on the 2012 Focus I had to get rid of. It accelerates, rides and handles every bit as well, and the cabin is not claustraphobic like the Focus. And the best part - an old fashioned torque converter autobox. No judder, no clonk on take off, no hesitation, no jitter at high speed just seamless smooth as silk changes and progression up and down the range. At £1500 cheaper than the same age and mileage Focus I couldnt be happier. So once over the badge snobbery, its Bye bye Ford and thank you for making me consider a car I wouldnt have looked at twice before while saving me money into the bargain. Result!
10-03-2015 01:34 AM
nvfocus I was so happy with my '13 after, I bought it a few months back and like most people here ,I too are experiencing dct issues and are afraid that one day it will stop running all together.

On the other hand, Ford says that all the shaking and noise is normal, should I stick it out or should I jump ship?

I really enjoy driving the car and the look of it.

The car shifts smoothly when cold and driving with care but, as soon as I give it some, it Shraders at any speed when taking off .
10-01-2015 09:10 PM
Scougar The problems with the transmission have personally just cost me $5k to get fixed (replacement transmission because it's apparently cheaper to replace than to repair). I have had the car what... 4 months? (Now at 68k miles)

I was under the illusion the problems just revolved around the clutch and TCM, but I can tell you now, they will do nothing to help you when the warranty runs out even if like me, you believe the problem was caused by the TCM/Clutch etc.

How the hell can I trust this car to take my family on a trip somewhere? The bottomline is I can't. I certainly can't trust Ford to assist either. And yes, I feel very burnt right now.
10-01-2015 02:29 PM
Pedro255
Quote:
Originally Posted by 2013MKIII View Post
Thought I would post an update on my situation (if anyone cares). Just to recap - my 2013 had clutches done at 7K miles, trans rebuild at 14K, and just now got new clutches and new seal at 27K miles.

I lost count how many times I had to take this car into the dealer for clutch engagement issues and shudder/grinding. Every single time I was told I was being ridiculous and expecting too much from the car. I was told that everything was within spec per the computer and my trans was normal. I have about 12 copies of Ford's BS "Operating Characteristics" propaganda they leave on my seat each time I bring it in.

No thanks to the reps on this forum (sorry, but I have to be sassy here because I did a lot of grunt work on my own to get resolution) - my car finally got new clutch(es) and seal at 27K, supposedly the 'latest iteration' of the parts because I wrote the owner of the dealership a letter explaining how die hard of a Ford person I am and that my experience with this car has been just awful.

All I can say is - try not to get frustrated and stay on top of your dealers. Don't take no for an answer. I think it's safe to say we all get judged because, typically (please don't snap at me for this one), the assumption is that the Focus is owned by a 'less intelligent' car owner and people assume you know nothing about vehicles or their functions and just complain for no reason.

That being said, when they did replace my parts, they mentioned the old clutch inside was junk and there was clearly a need for replacement (mind you I have had a lot of work done to my trans). With the latest work done - I think the car may be 'good' for some time. But all I can emphasize is that if you are one of the people experiencing repeat transmission issues, you have to stay persistent and pester your dealer.

I was about to get rid of this car and move on to something else. I can't blame people for wanting to do the same. If you have the patience and can ride this out (no pun intended), you may end up with a car you actually enjoy owning and driving.

Good luck to all.
Yeh, I just dumped mine. Had it fixed once and it started to go again, no way I was going to put up with that seriously flawed autobox continually going wrong. Only had it 9 months and took a massive hit in the pocket but it had to go. Worst car I have ever had the misfortune to own. Replaced it with a Kia ceed! Thats how desperate I am to get to work without having to take a train.
10-01-2015 01:48 PM
dchawk81
Quote:
Originally Posted by fomenter View Post
After I scheduled my appointment with a ford dealer in TX, ford customer service sent this electronic letter to me...Sooo my understanding is that this car is built to make all kinds of weird noises.

PowerShift 6 Speed Operating Characteristics
Background

In 2010, Ford launched an all new transmission, PowerShift, an advanced six-speed automatic transmission based on manual transmission technology with class-leading fuel efficiency. This communication will help explain the technology and common operating characteristics of this new transmission found on the Fiesta and Focus in order to improve customer expectations and
experiences. PowerShift is an advanced automatic transmission technology
The PowerShift is really like two 3-speed manual transmissions put together, with the dual clutch and shifting components controlled electronically. Since most of the components are derived from a manual transmission, the PowerShift transmission will drive, sound, and feel like a manual transmission but without the driver interaction.

Service Personnel Support
Since PowerShift Transmission is a new technology, some customers might not be familiar with the normal driving characteristics of this transmission. Service support personnel should be aware of the normal operating characteristics and be able to differentiate between normal characteristics and abnormal symptoms that require service. The following information will
assist with addressing certain potential customer concerns.

Common Characteristics of the PowerShift Transmission
Common Sounds a driver may notice are:

• Double clicking metal sounds. These noises can likely be heard while driving on very smooth surfaces during a 1-2 upshift or a 3-2-1coast down. The sounds occur with every gear engagement, but generally cannot be heard over the background engine, road and wind noises at higher speeds. Most noticeable if the windows are down and the radio is off, these sounds are of the shift forks moving and the synchronizers engaging a gear (similar to a manual transmission). These shifting sounds are part of normal operation.
• Coast down whine. A slight gear whine while slowing or coasting is normal
• Clicking sounds after the engine is turned off. As the vehicle is powered down, the
transmission will cycle the clutches to the released position so it is ready for a safe restart of the engine. This is part of normal operation. Clicking sounds from the
transmission immediately after the engine is turned off are normal.
• Low speed grinding. A slight grinding noise may be heard at about 2 MPH. This noise
is more evident during “trailer-hitching” events (see below). This noise is caused by a
normal bearing rotation and does not affect the durability of the transmission.
• Reverse gear whine. Some PowerShift transmissions will exhibit gear whine in reverse. The level of whine has been significantly reduced in later build vehicles, but can still be detected to some level. This is characteristic of many manual transmissions, and is not a defect or a situation in which a repair should be attempted

Trailer-hitching feel.
Some customers may experience a trailer-hitching feel (or a slight
bumping feel). The trailer-hitching feel may occur in lower forward gears – particularly if the customer is off and on the throttle quickly. It may be more noticeably in a parking lot or when a customer is doing multiple on/off throttle pedal maneuvers. This trailer-hitching/engagement feel is a normal characteristic of the dry clutch-equipped manual transmission design.
Conversely, conventional automatic transmissions are equipped with a torque converter. The torque converter is a fluid coupling device which dampens these positive engagements feels. Diagnostic tips to be used during service visit When evaluating a customer experience regarding this transmission, first compare to a like vehicle. The like vehicle should be at the same transmission fluid temperature as the customer’s vehicle. Sounds will change as the transmission oil changes temperature and viscosity. If the suspect sound is similar to a like transmission at the same temperature, then it is most likely a normal characteristic and no repair attempt should be made.

If the vehicle loses electrical power due to the removal of a power or ground battery cable, or the battery discharges, the transmission will perform an initial system status check upon power restore to verify shift motor position. This results in a series of mechanical noises for 10-30 seconds. The transmission will not engage and the vehicle will not move while this is
happening. This is normal after an electrical power loss to the transmission.

“Green” clutch break-in period
New, replacement, and reset clutches are “green” and require a break in period before shift event quality is maximized. During the break-in period, green clutches may exhibit:
• A rattle noise similar to a loose catalytic converter shield. This noise is commonly heard after light throttle 1-2, 2-3 or 3-4 upshifts. This rattle noise will diminish greatly as the clutch completes the break-in.
• A take-off shudder/launch judder (shaky vs. smooth).
• A harsh-shift feel during the first few cold shifts before the transmission reaches operating temperature.

All of the above conditions will diminish and the customer will notice progressively better launch and smoother shifting within the first few hundred miles of mixed driving as clutch break-in occurs. Note: The break-in process may take longer for highway driving, where the clutch is not shifting.
The transmission will automatically learn and make adaptations during shifting events, so it is important to evaluate after allowing sufficient driving time for adaptations to occur. This green clutch feel may reappear if the clutch touch points are reset and/or the clutch is removed and/or replaced. The condition may last longer for a clutch replacement than a reset. A reset may take up to 100 miles to get the new touch points learned to the point of not making
any of the out-of-adjustment noise. A clutch replacement may take up to 1000 miles to reach break-in dependent on the customer style of driving.
The break-in period can be minimized by performing the adaptive drive cycle exactly as described in the Workshop Manual, Section 307-11 (Fiesta) and 307-01 (Focus)
This is exactly the stuff my 2016 Peterbilt with 10 speed automatic transmission does. Same for all the other 2016 Peterbilts in the fleet.

So yeah it's normal.
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