I havn't really experimented with my car yet, but what is the best shift points that you have found? For normal driving I usually shift around 3k rpms, or by 4k at the latest, and not very often. I have had it above 4k, and it seems that around 5.5k rpms seems to be a good max shift point, but like I said i've not yet experimented enought to know for sure. Just looking for peoples thoughts that have had a 318i longer than me
On my '96 318i five speed, I shift around 3k mostly all the time, and sometimes to 3.5-4k when I want to get moving, mainly on ramps onto interstates. your shifting is just about like mine. On 6 cyls, you don't have to rev it near as high, especially on 328's and higher.
For optimal performance, you ideally want to shift between maximum power and maximum torque. i.e. once you've reached your power peak, you shift down so as not to drop the revs below the torque peak. That, of course, is best performance, and its really a bit much since the 318 developes its maximum kw at around 6000 which is really overkill, since the power curve is fairly flat. Nevertheless, on my 316, I find shifting at 3000 is fine, 4000 if i'm in a hurry, and if i need to 5k, but i havn't revved over 5500 - its really just pointless.
I know I could look up the numbers on where the max hp was when it was new, however, that changes with time and miliage. I am well aware that when you are speaking of performance you want to keep the rpms above max torque, which seemed to me like it is around 4k give or take a few hundred, but i've not quite figured out where it eases off with it's pulling. With my last car that was a stick anything over 5.6k rpms was just wasteing gas, however, max torque was in the mid 3k range. I've just had the time of the open road to test where the max power is. And also because i'm having to get my car used to working hard again. It still revs freely but i'm still working some of the cobwebs out. I neglected due to time constraints on doing a full tune-up on it when I first got it, so especially until then I still have to go kinda easy on her.
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