Today’s complex German engineered vehicles all make use of advanced transmission designs. Whether you drive a Porsche, Mercedes Benz, BMW, Volkswagen or Audi, your engine, brake, fuel and suspension management systems all interact with the transmission management and control system. The intent is to improve efficiency and fuel economy while also improving the overall driving experience. This technology was pioneered by BMW and Mercedes Benz and is often referred to as Adaptive Transmission Management (ATM). Fundamentally, the transmission in your BMW, Porsche, Mercedes Benz, Audi or Volkswagen learns from your individual driving style and adjusts internal pressures, shift points and other characteristics, affecting how your transmission shifts.
One common complaint about some ATM systems is that when someone else has been driving your vehicle, the transmission control module has made changes to the shift pressure and other settings to adapt to their individual style. When you as the owner get back into your vehicle, the vehicle does not shift as you were used to and the transmission must re-adapt to your specific style of driving.
A little more about Adaptive Transmission Management (ATM):
ATM receives signals related to your driving style from other systems including inputs from the accelerator pedal, the engine management system as well as the ABS and traction control systems to make internal adjustments to when and how your vehicle shifts. By making decisions based on the timing and manner of how you as the driver apply the accelerator and the brake, the ATM system will adjust internal clutch pressures and when to downshift. Additionally, the ATM system will adjust for driving conditions such as in winter, mountainous terrain and in traffic or winding roads.
Although not all “unusual” transmission issues are related to ATM adapting to different driving styles, it is always something to keep in mind. The BMW experts at German Auto Center of Austin can actually view the settings in your transmission controller module to look for any anomalies or settings that might be extreme. These can be reset to a standard factory setting.
The experts at German Auto Center also recommend that you bring your BMW, Porsche, Mercedes Benz, Audi or Volkswagen in to have the fluid inspected if these problems persist. Dirty or low fluid as well as a clogged filter will change internal pressures and prevent your transmission from operating properly. Most transmissions today do not have “dip sticks” and fluid levels must be checked electronically. Although not common, leaks may occur causing a loss of transmission fluid. Not all leaks may be detected externally, as leaks do occur internally such as through the wiring harness, causing other complications not detectible by a traditional transmission shop or general repair facility.
Follow these simple suggestions and listen to Austin’s Porsche, Mini, Mercedes Benz, Audi, Volkswagen and BMW repair experts in Austin. If you have any questions, simply come by and visit Austin German automobile repair experts at German Auto Center. We will be happy to assist you!