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Old 12-12-2012, 07:02 AM   #1
drdab99
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New Member / New Owner with DCT questions

Hi everyone,

I've been lurking here while making up my mind about a new car. My choices were between a Cruze, Mazda 3, and the Focus. The test drive convinced me, and I pick up my 2013 Ti hatch (performance blue) in 3 days.

I'm going into this with eyes wide open in regard to the DCT issues, and I have a few questions which I wonder if you all would be so kind to answer for me. This is a very impressive forum and I look forward to using this site as a great information source. Here are my questions:

1. Is there any objective data as to the actual percentage of cars which have had issues?

2. It seems that there are fewer 2013 owners posting with problems. Can I assume from this that the software updates have at least greatly reduced the issues?

3. Are there any hesitation issues when using Sport/manual mode? Truthfully, I plan on using that mode most often on my daily commute which takes me thru some beautiful countryside with great newly paved two-lane roads - my favorite kind of driving. I had to give up my beloved 5 speed because my wife has left hip issues which makes it difficult for her to use a clutch. I know the experience won't be the same, but it's as close as I can get.

Thanks in advance for your help. I look forward to spending a lot of time here in the future.


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Old 12-12-2012, 07:09 AM   #2
cobie56
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Quote:
Originally Posted by drdab99 View Post
Hi everyone,

I've been lurking here while making up my mind about a new car. My choices were between a Cruze, Mazda 3, and the Focus. The test drive convinced me, and I pick up my 2013 Ti hatch (performance blue) in 3 days.

I'm going into this with eyes wide open in regard to the DCT issues, and I have a few questions which I wonder if you all would be so kind to answer for me. This is a very impressive forum and I look forward to using this site as a great information source. Here are my questions:

1. Is there any objective data as to the actual percentage of cars which have had issues?

2. It seems that there are fewer 2013 owners posting with problems. Can I assume from this that the software updates have at least greatly reduced the issues?

3. Are there any hesitation issues when using Sport/manual mode? Truthfully, I plan on using that mode most often on my daily commute which takes me thru some beautiful countryside with great newly paved two-lane roads - my favorite kind of driving. I had to give up my beloved 5 speed because my wife has left hip issues which makes it difficult for her to use a clutch. I know the experience won't be the same, but it's as close as I can get.

Thanks in advance for your help. I look forward to spending a lot of time here in the future.
I have an early build (may 11) and never had any issues w/ the DCT since i bought it (it's had all the TSBs applied) and i will say that in 'S' mode it is much more responsive and more pleasurable to drive, tho mileage does suffer some as is expected. good luck w/ the new ride.
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Old 12-12-2012, 09:23 AM   #3
gsxrboy
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Have you considered manual? It is not hard to learn and it should take you about 2 to 3 days of driving to get the hang of it. Manual has no issues and provides in my opinion a better drive.
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Old 12-12-2012, 09:26 AM   #4
drdab99
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Have you considered manual? It is not hard to learn and it should take you about 2 to 3 days of driving to get the hang of it. Manual has no issues and provides in my opinion a better drive.
I would have loved to go manual, but as I mentioned, my wife has physical limitations and cannot comfortably use a clutch pedal. I've driven manuals most of my life and I figured that the Sport manual mode would be at least an approximation of the experience.
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Old 12-12-2012, 09:27 AM   #5
suss6052
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Originally Posted by gsxrboy View Post
Have you considered manual? It is not hard to learn and it should take you about 2 to 3 days of driving to get the hang of it. Manual has no issues and provides in my opinion a better drive.
Again the manual might have had fewer issues since it is old and proven. However it has not had zero issues with faulty gears/ syncros/ shafts/ etc that have plagued a few units in the 2012+ Focus.

This is as well as the fact that the gearing advantage of the 6DCT can't be ignored. If there was a six speed manual gearbox with the same or similar ratios available on the non ST then this would be ok, but the 5 speed is fundamentally the same and has roughly the same gear ratios as the ones used in 1994 by my old car (it wasn't the same transaxle, but the gear ratios /top gear specifically were basically identical at 0.82:1).

The DCT spins about 374 rpm slower at 70 mph than the manual simply based on the gearing when both cars are equipped with the 16" wheels. That alone can attribute to the efficiency gains of the additonal gear, as well as the fact that unlike a torque converter automatic or wet clutch DCT it does not have the parasitic drag of pumping all that additional fluid.
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Old 12-12-2012, 10:41 AM   #6
Just Tom
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Suss, as always your replies are thought out, detailed and well articulated
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Old 12-12-2012, 11:02 AM   #7
suss6052
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Had there been a 6MT available with this 2.0 L GDI engine with the same or similar gear ratios to the 6DCT I might have considered it, but the 2012+ Focus is approximately 589 lbs heavier than my old car's manufacturers suggested curb weight (that was 18 years ago before rust took a hold and knocked it down a bit more) so the fact that it can manage to be as efficient if not more so despite the extra power and weight just go to show how well the powertrain can and does work together.

The 5MT just doesn't have the legs to bring down the engine speed at freeway speeds.

I do still find myself shifting the DCT manually on occasion, especially when I want to lock it into 6th gear on the freeway unless I really need to accelerate as this would also prevent the car from jumping back and forth between gears on any slight incline or decline in terrain.

I drove my previous car for over 44,000 miles in about 3 years, but this was also while I was still in university and rotating every 12 weeks into the work environment driving 100+ miles a day five days a week including heavy stop and go traffic. The part that bothered me the most after awhile was the drone of the exhaust at 3000 rpm that and the headaches from this.
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Old 12-13-2012, 08:54 AM   #8
sogosu
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Quote:
Originally Posted by drdab99 View Post
..
3. Are there any hesitation issues when using Sport/manual mode? Truthfully, I plan on using that mode most often on my daily commute which takes me thru some beautiful countryside with great newly paved two-lane roads - my favorite kind of driving. I had to give up my beloved 5 speed because my wife has left hip issues which makes it difficult for her to use a clutch. I know the experience won't be the same, but it's as close as I can get.

..
I have a '12 Ti and the only thing I hate about the DCT is the selectshift.
When I manually shift from 2nd to 3rd there is about a 1 sec delay before 3rd engages and my rpms shoot up 600 - 1000. All other gear changes (upshift and downshift) are quick. I have gone to the dealer and was told this is normal behaviour =\

Not sure if anyone has experienced this in the 2013s but there are a few of us on here with the 2012s that have this issue.
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