Engine Braking
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Thread: Engine Braking

  1. #1
    Junior Member Buckeye200's Avatar
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    Default Engine Braking

    I don't want to waste anyone's time. Yours is valuable to me and I appreciate it. If there is a sticky or a knowledge base somewhere I can reference information on this please point me in that direction. I haven't had any luck finding an answer, if one exists.

    This is my first 200, is there a way to turn off or disengage the engine braking that occurs when braking going downhill? Example: Traveling down a significant grade, not always mountainous, apply brakes (zero throttle) and car downshifts...every time. Same grade, further down the hill, release brakes fully and apply again, another downshift. Now I'm in 3rd gear clocking well over 3k on the tachometer. I understand the concept of engine braking but have no need for it in my car. I find it highly annoying and very unnecessary for me. My brakes slow me just fine. In fact, it makes it more difficult at times since when it downshifts it "free wheels" and picks up speed between gears. Not a great deal of speed mind you but I'm braking to slow, not speed up...hence my aggravation. Is there some other purpose to this relevant to engine function/performance? I have wrenched on engines under the "shade tree" on and off for 20+ years and never had this problem. Of course, I've never owned a car with as sophisticated a engine/transmission as this either so I may be missing something. Has anyone else experienced this? Thanks again everyone for your time!

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    When braking most cars with automatic transmissions DO downshift... The difference is that older cars have transmissions that are allowed to slip through the torque converter... The newer cars act similar to a manual transmission and keep the engine connected to the transmission until the speed gets low enough that the engine would stall... This way the transmission is in a gear closer to the speed the car is rolling at so when you hit the accelerator there is no lag like from an older slipping "slush-o-matic" transmissions that transfered power through the torque converter... You now do feel the engine whine down and shift down ... the "free wheeling" you describe comes from the "infamous" ZF 9HP 9speed transmission shifting between the banks of gears and is fairly normal and disliked by 2015~2017 Chrysler 200 owners... I have adjusted myself to the sometimes slow shifting and believe that FCA cannot or will not address the transmission control module quirks or cannot do anything more to correct this German designed transmission.... The "lag" is caused by a mechanical delay from the "dog clutches" shifting between different banks of gears and can usually be felt between 4th and 5th gears (up or down)... It's like you shifting slowly between gears in a manual transmission car....You "coast" with the clutch in... Software can't compensate for this lag... FCA did improve the TCM software attempting to pre-determine what the driver's next move might be but nothing is perfect...

    This tranny is also used in Honda/Acura, LandRover, and Jaguar cars... ZF claims it is a software problem but both Honda and FCA experience the SAME shift lags with different software... ZF did design a good transmission considering that they were able to fit 9 speeds in almost the same physical space as their 6 speed unit...

    See...
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/ZF_9HP_transmission#Honda

    Almost ALL car manufacturers don't design their own engines and transaxles... today they buy/share technology to save money...

    I really doubt that you will have a catastrophic transmission failure... We all will have to get comfortable with design changes caused by the government demand for higher mileage...
    Dave

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    Default

    When the car is engine braking, it should keep it at speed or help slow down. If it's gaining speed, that tells me you might have older software on your cars computer. There have been updates that corrected the issue with the engine braking speeding up the car rather than slow or keep it steady.

    Check with the dealer that your car is up to date on software modules. This was an update sent out several years ago.

    Oh and there is no turning this off. It's the design, unless you manually shift yourself.
    2015 Chrysler 200C v6 FWD
    Moonroof, 19" wheels
    Chrysler bike hitch receiver

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    I don't know about the 9-speed, but with the 6-speed auto, if you put it in Autostick and leave it in 6th, it overrides the downshifting and engine braking that occurs. I also find it annoying to go down a mild slope at 65 mph and have it drop into 5th gear and rev up. Keep it in 6th manually, it barely gains a few mph.

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    Junior Member Buckeye200's Avatar
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    Thanks for the responses everyone. I figured it'd be something I'll have to live with but still had to ask the question. However, I will take it in and make sure the tranny software is up to date. I bought it new (11/2016) and have never had it checked.

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    It is good to see this forum's members chiming in with their experiences with the 2015 on 200's... The 6 speed is quite different internally as a lot of new space was needed for the extra 3 gears within nearly the same space... The link I posted above addresses the differences... It does require an open mind to deal with new technologies used with the engines, transmissions, and the HVAC systems in these cars...They do react differently than the older "norms"...
    Dave

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    I experienced the same thing - specifically the downshift to 3rd gear and rev up to 3k. I've found it only does this if it's in 4th gear and I'm going down hill. If it up-shifts to 5th gear before I start braking, it won't downshift to third and engine brake. That's how I've learned to live with it.

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