1996 Acura 3.5RL , how to tell if transmission stil goes into "overdrive".

Hi:
I have a 1996 Acrua 3.5 RL. I has 98,000 miles on it. THe car is in pretty good mechanical shape overall except I do not know if its automatic transmission goes into "overdrive" any more. I can tell
clearly when transmission shifts from 1->2, and from 2->3, and from 3->4, but after that it seems there should be a further "overdrive" shift down. I note only a very slight shift down. On level highway going at a steady speed the RPMs show 2500 RPM at steady 75 MPH. SHould it not be lower? I can't recall from earlier years how this was, have owned this car since 1998.
George
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Isn't there an "OD off" button?
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TeGGeR wrote:

No, as far as I can tell (and I have been driving this car for 8 years), there is no "OD off" button.
George
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Then 2,500rpm at 75mph IS overdrive. My Integra's 5-speed manual does 4,000rpm at 85mph.
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2500rpm for 3.5L @ 75mph should be right.

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Nightdude wrote:
I was in a honda odyssey minivan yesterday. It has the same size engine, a 3.5litre V6. It 75 MPH it is doing a low 2100 RPM or so, perhaps even 2000. ANd, at top end of accelerating it clearly does a nice slowing down of engine as it seem to go into its last year or the overdrive. I know, the minivan and 3.5RL are diff cars but with same size engines i expected 3.5RL to have if anything lower RPMs for the same miles/hour when going steady on a flat road.
If someone otu there has a 3.5RL it would be nice if they can see what is their RPM when cruising on flat road at 75 MPH.
thanks for comments people.
George

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A minivan has a different final drive than a sport luxury sedan. That would account in the RPM difference.

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The RL has a 4 speed transmission
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ESmith wrote:

So, if I can "see" (on tach) the shifts and feel them, (1->2, 2->3, 3->4), is that all it should do? Sounds like you are telling me that that should be about it.
Either way, thanks for the comment.
George
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What comes after the 3-4 shift, and feels like another gear, is not really a gear shift, but the torque converter locking up. The torque converter in an automatic transmission is the equivalent of a clutch in a manual transmission. In 1st and 2nd gears it always slips, which is why you can hold you brake pedal at a traffic light while the car is in gear. In 3rd and 4th gears on most 4-speed automatics, the torque converter will lock up while cruising to save fuel and reduce heat. Locking up of the torque converter feels like a gear shift, only the change in RPM is very small - 200-300 rpm at most. When the transmission is cold, the torque converter won't lock up, this is done to help the tranny warm up faster and to avoid stress to parts that aren't warmed up yet. If you don't feel the lock-up, where you previouly used to, this may indicate a problem with the temp sensor in the transmission, or one of the solenoids. Having said that, 2500 rmp at 75 mph seems about right, althoug I don't have an RL and can't tell for sure.

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