As I have previously mentioned I purchased a 2009 Nissan Rogue last month that came with a CVT transmission. Nissan provides this type of transmission with several of their different models and the CVT has become standard equipment on some of their models.
What is a CVT transmission? Over at HowStuffWorks they provide diagrams and this description:
Peer into a planetary automatic transmission, and you’ll see a complex world of gears, brakes, clutches and governing devices. By comparison, a continuously variable transmission is a study in simplicity. Most CVTs only have three basic components:
- A high-power metal or rubber belt
- A variable-input “driving” pulley
- An output “driven” pulley
CVTs also have various microprocessors and sensors, but the three components described above are the key elements that enable the technology to work.
The car itself is easy to drive and for a four banger has plenty of poop for passing and climbing hills. Compared to the Kia Sportage we previously had that groaned climbing hills, the Rogue’s engine is barely noticeable climbing the hills where we live. On the freeway the vehicle passes easily around slower traffic and overall is a pleasure to drive.
But from a dead stop when you hit the accelerator there seems to be a lack of immediate response. On Friday I pulled out into a center lane trying to merge into traffic. I hit the gas while a jerk speed up not allowing me to merge. The response felt like I was missing a gear during acceleration. What I had forgot to do was turn off the over drive which seems to kick the car into fast mode.
So if you own a car with a CVT tranny let me know what your experience has been. My wife says the car drives fine, but she drives less aggressively than I do. LOL