Ford CVT

What's the word on CVT? I've been in a Ford 500 for a few weeks, and it is sure nice to drive. Wonder if I would feel the same way after 50,000 miles.

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Rgis is not a transmission you are going to tow things behind but, driven properly, they are a good trans.... Unfortunately, the CVT plant was one of the facilities hit in the cutbacks.... We've been told that the 6 speed auto (which is a very good trans) is going to be the only one offered for some time....

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And my 91 f150 had a good transmission. $2700 at 70k miles good. So I'm a bit reserved about a cvt. Thoughts about the Excape Hybrid? I still wonder if a car based SUV is what I want over a Crown Vic or Towncar.

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We live in a remote area... no hybrids as yet (though someone bought a SmartCar) and nobody going to school for them (tells me that the sales department isn't going to order any in the near future). My guess is that the trans in your 91 was an AOT/AOD and you drove in "OD" all the time.... These transmissions would "hunt" between OD and 3rd, overheat parts and eventually self-destruct. The current crop of electronically controlled transmissions is a bit better at deciding what gear is needed (4R70 and 4R75 excluded) but it is still wise to select "D" rather than "OD" when towing or driving in an urban setting with any Ford transmissions lacking the "E" suffix.
My best suggestion is to decide what suits your current lifestyle the best and make a purchasing decision based on what will work best for you...
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Do I detect a hint of "the driver drove it wrong and caused the failure"?
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The Escape Hybrid is an altogether different type of CVT. It is more like a conventional 4 speed auto, but has no bands to slip. The engine and electric motors play against each other to adjust RPM, instead of locking one portion of the planetary gearset.
I think the "eCVT" transmission in the hybrid should last as long as any manual transmission.
The Escape Hybrid is not a car I would choose over a Towncar, though. This is a smaller, noisier, rougher vehicle. The eCVT lets RPM run high under load, over 5,000 RPM is maintained in hard acceleration.
But a Towncar has never been on my short list. I have an Escape Hybrid as a replacement for a Dodge Durango, which was also loud and rough riding ;-)
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Clarence A Dold - Hidden Valley (Lake County) CA USA 38.8,-122.5
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The CVT in the hybrid is not a transmission at all, it is only an electric motor attached to a differential; it acts as transmission, engine brake, and is also the starter motor for the gas engine. The gas engine only accelerates the car; it plays no part in torque braking; when not needed for acceleration, it is shut down, even as the car is "idling at a light.

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The Escape Hybrid eCVT is a planetary gearset. It functions a lot like half of the four speed automatic in the standard Escape, except that the electric motor hanging out the side is a little lumpy by comparison to the band in a 4 speed automatic. The 2008 GM/Dodge/Mercedes hybrid eCVT puts the motors inline and looks like a conventional automatic externally as well as internally.
The Hybrid gas engine does offer compression braking, it does run almost all the time, and must run if the road speed is over 40mph.
The point is that the Ford 500 CVT is similar to the Honda CVT. The Escape Hybrid eCVT is different from the Ford 500 CVT. It could functionally be described as wheels, engine, and motor on the legs of a differential, but the gears are very similar to an automatic.
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Clarence A Dold - Hidden Valley (Lake County) CA USA 38.8,-122.5
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CVT have been around in automobiles since first used by DAF in the sixties. CVT have been used to run heavy, high torque low speed, machinery way back to the twenties. Until lately however when run at higher RPMs they were subjected to rapid belt wear. Newer technically has eliminated that problem.. A CVT has many fewer parts to go wrong than a convention multistage tranny and should easily outlast current trannys.
To obtain the most efficient use a CVT the throttle should be floored to allow the tranny to select the most efficient gear ratio for the condition at hand, then let up when you obtain the result you want.
mike hunt

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My Honda Civic CVT is fine at 60,000, but that's a lighter car. Most of the CVTs available today are in lighter cars.
It is weird, the lack of shifting and strange RPM points.
For economy, I select about 3,000 RPM and let the road speed climb while the RPM stays steady.
Under heavy acceleration, the high RPM sounds like a lack of progress, unless you watch the speedo. ;-)
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Clarence A Dold - Hidden Valley (Lake County) CA USA 38.8,-122.5
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