Automated Manual Transmission (AMT) equipped cars are getting more popular with each passing day, and more automakers are launching such cars in India. AMTs are way different from conventional automatic transmissions and the DSGs. Driving an AMT car needs a few tips and tricks. And here are 5 things you should NOT do while driving one.
Forgetting what an AMT actually is
The Automatic Manual Transmission was not born as conventional automatic gearbox. So, don’t drive an AMT like a conventional automatic. The mechanism behind the AMTs are the same as the manual transmissions but only the clutch part and the gear shifts are automated.
Now if you have driven a manual car, you will know that to shift a gear, you have to lift off your foot from the accelerator. Not doing so will cause a major jerk in your vehicle and may also damage your engine and transmission. The same is the case with the AMTs.
Lift you foot slightly when you want the gear to be changed and the transmission computer will do the job of shifting gears of you. While slowing down, you can lift of foot completely and modulate the brake pedal. The transmission will take care of the downshifts.
Never ignore the handbrake!
The cars with AMTs are generally budget cars and misses out on features like hill hold and hill descent control. The AMT may make you feel that you are not in control because of the absence of clutch but here is your saviour. Use the handbrake on the inclines to hold the car in one place just like the manual cars. It prevents the car from rolling back. Also, you do not put excess pressure on the transmission by using the proper braking mechanism instead of modulating the gas pedal to hold the car in one place.
Get off the gas pedal when in slow moving traffic
AMTs are also evolving and the modern ones offer advanced features like the “Creep” function. It is meant to be used during heavy heavy traffic situations. This allows your car to creep forward by just releasing the brake pedal. This function does not require you to press the accelerator but the car creeps forward slowly in heavy traffic situations. This function helps immensely in city traffic. This lessens the wear and tear on the the transmission. Many AMT cars like the Tata GenX Nano, Maruti Dzire and Renault Duster AMT are equipped with this function.
Unplanned overtaking can be very dangerous
More so, on AMT equipped cars. AMTs are not the most energetic transmissions in the automobile fraternity. They do take time to shift and you should give them enough time to do things at their own pace. Be very cautious while overtaking and plan your next move before hand.
If your transmission offers manual mode, shift to it and use it during extreme situations else, do the teamwork with the transmission and be safe on road. Remember, the safest overtaking maneuvers are the ones that are executed in least time.
Don’t rely on engine braking
After driving manual cars extensively, we get used to the engine braking of the car. But with the AMT, you lose the control over clutch and also, lose the control over engine braking. You have to stay sharp while braking on AMT because the engine would not help much with the braking.
Spending a little time with the AMT will make you understand its working better. AMTs save you a lot of money in term of buying cost, maintenance cost and the running cost but also saves you during heavy traffic situation by eliminating the need of clutch operation.