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Discussion Starter #21
I think the aggressiveness with which the Ascent changes its CVT ratios just after step-off could be adjusted. If Subaru just programmed that ratio change to occur more slowly...over a slightly longer period of time...that'd be an improvement and would make for a much smoother drive. Maybe it's not that simple. That the TR580 is completely smooth in this regard gives me hope. I guess only Subaru knows for sure. :p
 

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I think the aggressiveness with which the Ascent changes its CVT ratios just after step-off could be adjusted. If Subaru just programmed that ratio change to occur more slowly...over a slightly longer period of time...that'd be an improvement.
That can be accomplished with ECM programming. The ECM is demanding that. the TCM is just giving it what it requests. Throttle mapping will resolve those types of things. People on here with a COBB AccessPort can attest to how their tunes remap in ways that affect how shifting operates.
 

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My Ascent was built middle of Dec 20. It does not have the jerky tip like my Outbacks had. It drives like a regular car. Even my wife noticed the difference. And the ‘gear shifts’ are almost imperceivable. If you didn’t see the tachometer drop off at the ‘shift’ you probably wouldn’t know it had ‘shifted’. Of course if you step on it hard, you feel the shift.
 

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Our 21 is smooth don’t notice any shifts at all.
however it does have that feel right after take off of falling flat on its face.. almost like it goes into neutral.
Does the Cobb tuner fix this? I may have to grab one if so
 

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Our 21 is smooth don’t notice any shifts at all.
however it does have that feel right after take off of falling flat on its face.. almost like it goes into neutral.
Does the Cobb tuner fix this? I may have to grab one if so
I have the Cobb Accessport (for way over a year now) and in my opinion it does improve the feel significantly. The car feels more relaxed, not as aggressive, until you push the throttle then it really shows off the extra torque (I use the 93 map, never looked back). This is not how it normally is, where you barely touch the pedal and it wants to drag race. It also moves the fake shifting to higher rpms, more "out of the way" of normal driving.
 

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Yes, I guess I should post that here. I did get a polite reply via email a few business days later. The SoA representative thanked me for the letter, encouraged me to visit my service department if I feel there's something wrong with the car, and said she would file my complaint with their product engineering department. Based on what I've heard on this forum about their customer service, I do believe they actually will file my report, but I'm only mildly hopeful that something will come from it. Subaru seems to have taken a pretty consistent position with the simulated shifts in many of their vehicles and I presume that most people don't notice or even care.

I was encouraged that Motor Trend wrote about this in a national publication...but I'm still not terribly hopeful of a software patch.
I have a 2019 Limited Ascent and am having the same problem with the CVT transmission. It is disheartening b/c I really want to like this vehicle. Unfortunately, the dealership can't do anything about it b/c there are no warning lights on to indicate a problem. Told me to go see another service dept. Was thinking it was just a first year model problem but apparently not. Will probably be trading it soon
 

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I have a 2019 Limited Ascent and am having the same problem with the CVT transmission. It is disheartening b/c I really want to like this vehicle. Unfortunately, the dealership can't do anything about it b/c there are no warning lights on to indicate a problem. Told me to go see another service dept. Was thinking it was just a first year model problem but apparently not. Will probably be trading it soon
Did you reach out to SOA customer service to get them involved?
 

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Discussion Starter #28
I have a 2019 Limited Ascent and am having the same problem with the CVT transmission. It is disheartening b/c I really want to like this vehicle. Unfortunately, the dealership can't do anything about it b/c there are no warning lights on to indicate a problem. Told me to go see another service dept. Was thinking it was just a first year model problem but apparently not. Will probably be trading it soon
Yes, I think the only advice I could give echoes Jim's suggestion: contact Subaru of America and let them know of your dissatisfaction. They probably get this type of information from dealers, but it's very likely aggregated into high-level metrics that aren't very actionable. But reports from customers are logged into their system and they then have a record of specific complaints. I hope everyone who is dissatisfied with the transmission programming actually calls or emails SoA. This forum is a good way for people to get together and understand whether their car is acting the same as others or not...but this forum doesn't submit trouble tickets to Subaru...owners have to do that and let them know where improvement is needed. Perhaps more than any other automotive company, it seems that Subaru is small enough that they really have their ear to the ground and take suggestions for improvement seriously.

So...please contact SoA and let them know you're not pleased with how it drives and let them know that your dealer checked it out and says it's operating normally. You'll likely get a response saying that they'll let their product engineering department know of the complaint. However, they may just let you know that they have a fix in development right now (and we'd expect you to report that back here and brighten our day!).
 

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Our Ascent is at the dealer today for some warranty work and I specifically asked for a 2.5L Outback as a loaner. I love the Outback...and its drivetrain smoothness is what I thought I was buying with the Ascent. :cool:

When you take off with light-to-moderate throttle, the engine speed doesn't flash up to about 2000 rpm and then get ratcheted back down like what happens in the Ascent. It rises to 1500 to perhaps 1800 rpm and then just...stays there. Like it should with a CVT. After a few seconds, the CVT might lower the ratio a little bit, but it doesn't put the engine down to 1200 rpm like what happens in the Ascent...it's a smooth transition. The Outback definitely does not have the power of our Ascents, but I'd definitely buy an FB25-powered Outback vs. an FA24-powered one if I were buying today. The drivetrain is notably better sorted in the Outback. It drives like a CVT should drive.

Well, except for high throttle simulated shifts (I presume it has those, though I didn't try to find them on the relatively short drive home).

It's definitely renewed my interest in Subaru fixing the programming issues with our Ascents.

I don't care for the big screen in the dash, but I could get used to it. My loaner has the heated seats, heated steering wheel, SRH, and all the toys. I really like it. REALLY like it. I'm not ready for another vehicle yet, but I don't particularly see me wanting something other than one of these when I am ready.
I have a similar issue with my 2020 non turbo Outback. Transmission is jerky at time mainly at low speeds around town especially when slowing down. Seems like they ruined a good thing.
 
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