Piston Slap: A Self-defeating Technology Disorder?
Got a Mazda 3 hatch to replace my 29-year-old MR2, and while it’s no MR2, it has its own benefits. But I detest Hill Launch Assist, and the power steering is the biggest reminder that it’s no MR2.
The Mazda power steering is better than I expected, but it’s still the first thing I notice when I start it up and always makes me want the MR2 back, three years later. I tried turning the engine off on a private road with just enough slope to keep moving, and it’s kind of scary to imagine that happening on a freeway, it’s so stiff and jerky. Is there any way to disable it and having just plain manual steering, to see what it’s like?
As for Hill Assist, what annoys me the most is not knowing if a slope is enough to trigger it or not; if I expect it, and it didn’t engage, there’s a tire chirp for no reason, and if I don’t expect it but it did engage, I sometimes kill the engine unless I’m paying attention. I can understand its attraction for weenies who are just learning stick, but I don’t need it and don’t want it.
Calling this a disorder is a bit much, so perhaps let’s just do it, to it.
Regarding the (intrusive?) Hill Launch Assist, considering these links ( here, here) and what little I know about SCT’s tuning parameters, there’s a slim chance a performance tune could disable Hill Launch Assist while giving you a few more ponies. Better ask SCT, as I had the opportunity to 100 percent kill AdvanceTrac on my 2011 Ranger. But my tail-happy little rig should default to implementing mindless, stress-free control on slick roads. I am rather surprised you’d defeat Hill Launch Assist for similar reasons.
But hey, I live in a flat city so who cares what I think?
As previously mentioned, you can probably pull a fuse/disconnect the plug at the steering motor to experience manual steering on a car with big-ish wheels and a small tiller. I suspect you will regret it the minute you take a low speed, high steering input, parking maneuver.
Send your queries to firstname.lastname@example.org. Spare no details and ask for a speedy resolution if you’re in a hurry…but be realistic, and use your make/model specific forums instead of TTAC for more timely advice.
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