Last post on Jan 05, 2009 at 9:52 AM
You are in the Subaru Legacy & Outback
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Subaru Outback, Subaru, Sedan, Wagon
#1 of 4 2009 Outback Sport Mode
Dec 26, 2008 (1:57 pm)
Can someone explain "Sport" mode in the 2009 Outbacks? My 2000 Outback gears were "drive-3-2-1" and that made sense to me. "Sport" does not seem to correspond to 3, and I can't figure out how to use it. The dealer explanation did not help me - I don't think they got it either. Thanks for your help.
#2 of 4 Re: 2009 Outback Sport Mode [mfife]
Dec 26, 2008 (5:04 pm)
Sport mode allows you to select 1,2,3,4 by pushing the shifter toward the +/- Also if you just leave it in "S" and don't shift it yourself, then the transmission is put into a more agressive shifting pattern (higher shift points).
Subaru Guru and Track Instructor
#3 of 4 Re: 2009 Outback Sport Mode [paisan]
Dec 29, 2008 (12:11 pm)
Thanks for the reply. I tried Sport mode and could only find 1,2 gears. Is there a trick to getting 3,4?
"a more agressive shifting pattern (higher shift points)." . . . I am a complete newbie with these things and kind of slow just in general . . . what does it mean for it to be "more aggressive" and what is a higher shift point? I apologize.
For example, when going up a steep hill, will the car be happier in drive, sport, or 2nd? In my 2000 Outback I would put it in 3rd and it always seemed happy with that.
Thanks for your reply, sorry to be asking such basic questions
#4 of 4 Re: 2009 Outback Sport Mode [mfife]
Jan 05, 2009 (9:52 am)
Not sure if this will help, but higher shift point means that the transmission holds a given gear longer as the engine accelerates. So, if starting from a stop with the transmission in "D", your car might shift from 1 to 2 at 2,000 RPM, then from 2 to 3 at 2,200 RPM, then 3 to 4 at 2,000 RPM. Now, if starting from the same stop with the transmission in "sport" (shift lever pulled to the left of "D"), your car might shift from 1 to 2 at 3,000 RPM, then from 2 to 3 at 2,800 RPM, then 3 to 4 at 2,800 RPM again.
Of course, these numbers are completely made up, but you can see that in the second scenario, the engine speed is higher when the car makes the shift between gears. This equates to faster acceleration in the second scenario, all else being equal. Ergo, it makes the car feel "sportier."
As for going up a steep hill, the car should do fine in drive or sport. The final gear will be selected based on throttle input and sensor feedback. If you choose "manumatic" and have it in second, that's fine as long as it is appropriate for the hill. I tested my '08 Outback's manual mode and it held gears up to redline before automatically shifting, and down to a near stop, before resetting in first. So, you do need to be paying some amount of attention to shifting. However, the car will not let you shift into a gear if it is not safe to do so (you cannot shift into first at 50 mph nor fourth at 15 mph).