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The position of the gear lever

9246 Views 10 Replies 8 Participants Last post by  JulianoG
I could not find in the manual, is it advisable to shift to the "N" or keep it in the "D" position when stopping at the traffic lights and similar situations. Also, is there a difference in handling this, when the engine is running, as compared to when it is turned off.
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In my 34 years of driving automatics I've never shifted into neutral when stopped at lights.

The only time I've ever put it into neutral or park is in long traffic jams and then I've switched the engine off, not had to do this in my hybrid as yet.
Don't shift to N. In neutral the engine (ice) will not charge the battery if needed.

Since there is a planetary gear box there is no friction plate to worrie about.
I've always thought that Automatics and CVTs in specific shouldn't have an obvious Neutral gear (hide it as a special option). For the Hybrid in particular it is something you would never want to use in day to day driving. I can certainly see the confusion for people coming from manuals.
The other thing is if you are used in a manual to using Neutral so you can take your foot off the break (putting the handbrake on) then the break hold feature is a good alternative
Sat at a junction on a hill, either up or down slope, I press the hill hold button and then foot off the brake. Car sits securely. Then you just press the throttle, the hold disengages and off you go. So easy, and a great feature.
Just leave in D with foot on brake at lights.
Don't worry what engine is doing, you don't have any real control of its activities. Use hill hold if required.
Neutral probably when being towed.
toyo said:
Basically that article is not taking account of modern engine management. Cars these days know when they are stopped.
toyo said:
Some of that may be true (or have been true) for normal automatics, but not for hybrids with no clutch. No extra wear if sitting with foot on brake - or as others have said use the hold feature if you dont want to shine brake lights at car behind.
Never shift to N (neutral). It is designed only for situations when the car needs to be pushed due to some fault.
Instead use the button HOLD for traffic lights and jams.

P.S. Did you know that the C-HR has automatic Hill-Start Assist? When you release the break pedal, the car holds the breaks for an additional second until you push the accelerator. It only works when the gear lever is in R, D or B.
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