Our 2002 Trooper with the 3.5 has the same "feature"...I'm not too fond of
it! Fine for someone who isn't bright enough to downshift on a steep grade
I suppose. But not that great when I'm cruising down a hill and it
downshifts when I want it to keep rolling!
As I type this and think, I may actually have an answer. Try turning on the
"power drive" button - assuming the Rodeo has one. I've gotten to where I
just leave the Trooper in "power drive" all the time - it is much more
responsive...otherwise it upshifts too soon and won't downshift quickly
enough for reasonable driving. If you go easy on it, it will probably shift
about the same anyway. But...I say all that to say that I don't remember it
doing that downshift in quite a while...could be the "power drive" disables
Otherwise, the trick I found was to just barely keep your foot on the gas.
If you're giving it any gas at all, it won't downshift. Of course depending
on the grade, that might not be an option...!
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