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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I saw on a Mustang forum a reference to launching in 2nd gear. Interesting? So I was reading the manual for the Fusion Sport and found a reference on page 166 about low traction starts and that the Sport can start in 2nd gear.

My Sport is too new to push it real hard but I did tried this. Pretty Interesting. 0-60 with only one shift point. (2nd to 3rd)

Full Stop, Hold brake.
Traction Control Off (not sure if it makes a difference).
Sport mode on.
While stopped use the paddle shifter to select 2nd gear. (Displays 2).
Roll on the power, at 2k RPM let go the brakes and keep adding power. (I did not hold the brakes in my test.)
Just keep rolling on the power, at 6k RPM it will shift to 3rd. I’m not sure if using a paddle to change from 2nd to 3rd sooner would help.

This method felt like the car pulled harder but I am new to the car so I really don’t know. I have not read about anyone trying this or the results. I’m sure someone can perfect this method. If you have a good butt dyno, give it a try and see if you feel a difference?
-Lee
 

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Hmm. Interesting. Be curious to see this done. I have about 3,000 miles on the odo, so I might give it a go sometime if I think about it.
 

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Interesting. Are you sure it started in 2? Often paddle shifters in various cars will indicate the selected gear but the transmission starts from 1 and works its way up, especially from a top. Watch the tach and listen to it - see if it's actually starting there.
 

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I haven't launched, but I know it can start in 2. I've been at lights and put it in 2 and it's definitely a different feel from starting in 1. I have no doubt that you can do it.
 

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Ive launched my mustang in 2nd and it does help with tire spin, but Im not sure if the FS has enough HP/TQ to benefit from it. It all boils down to the gear ratio of 2nd gear in the tranny.
 

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I'm a little concerned with lugging the engine. I think a little spin would be better.
Yeah I agree that could be a concern. With the Sport I don't think we need to worry about traction or wheel spin having much if any negative affect on times, however one less gear change could have a positive affect as the OP pondered. In the end though we have the gears and gear ratio's that we have, just need to harness them the best we can, and tuning is probably the only way to do that.
 

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In the comments section of the Car and Driver review of the Fusion Sport, the author mentions that he got the best acceleration times with the all season tires since they allowed a bit of wheel spin, while the summer rubber did not. This would seem to indicate that eliminating the small amount of wheel spin possible in this car isn't desirable anyway, so unless there is a big advantage in eliminating the 1-2 shift, I don't think this will help. As power seems to fall off in 3rd gear, I'm not sure being in 3rd longer than normal is going to yield better times either. It would be interesting to test though.

Aside from performance issues, starting in second can certainly be handy sometimes in slippery winter conditions, but again with AWD I don't think this will be necessary.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Here is a video I took today of the Sport starting in 2nd great from 0 to 60. It felt fast. I had to be in Sport mode for me to put it into 2nd for the start. Note that the only shift is from 2nd to 3rd around 50 mpg. The car only had about 140 miles so I did not push it too hard. I rolled on the throttle (someone posted about this on a previous thread.) I did not go WOT, peddle never went to the floor. No launch. I did this to show the 2nd gear start. I did not do it for a 0-60 time. I’ll try that later after more break-in.
Factory stock, 62 degrees, 93 Octane, TC Off, Tires at 39 psi.
Thoughts? Has anyone else tried this?
-Lee
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Very good! Were you not in 3rd long enough on the video to show the hesitation?
I let up once I hit 60. I guess I should have kept going or at least kept filming. I only did it once as I did not want to push the new car.
 

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Looks to be an interesting way to launch. I'd be curious to see what a brake boost would do.

May have to experiment on lunch time.
 

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I think your 1/4 mile ET will be slower as your 60ft time will be longer and that is one of the biggest keys in drag racing - but you might also have a higher trap time as you will be the higher gear a longer period of time - For me not something I would advise - little tough on tranny when boost launching - but in winter and slippery conditions might be a good idea -
 

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Tried this today randomly when driving in traffic except I did nothing launch worthy. Just started in 2nd to get a feel of how to do it. Definitely up for trying it again with no traffic around.
 

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Was out on some deserted private road and decided to try this with a brake boost holding rpms at about 2,000 rpms. No bueno. I don't know if I did something wrong or not. But it started to go, then switched back to 1st and went straight to redline. Needless to say, no improvement.
 

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Did you have the Sport button on?? Might be a dumb question.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 · (Edited)
In my video rolled the power on. I have read other places on this forum that flooring it straight to WOT is slower than rolling up to WOT.
I ran the video thru Movie Maker and used the video timer. I believe 0-60 was 5.5 seconds. I did not go WOT as the car was new. After about 1k miles I'll try it again and see what it does with a launch.
 

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I wonder if rolling into WOT is a Ford ecoboost thing. Not that it had the same power under the hood but the 13 fusion I had with the 2.0 eb engine also performed better when I rolled into WOT rather than flooring it quickly.

I have not gone for the red line on the sport yet since it only has 600 mi on it for now but it seems to have the same behavior.
 

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Yeah, did have the sport mode on. But maybe if I stomped on it too hard it would have down shifted for me due to the safety feature like it does in other gears as well? I'm thinking that may be what happened.
 

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2nd gear just don't seem to work, and wot either, I get the best results from 1st with a short shift to 2nd and a roll in on the throttle, traction control off. It needs some tweaking on the throttle plate and the transmission shift points to get more aggressive and better response.
 

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I know this is a very old thread, but long time car guy/hot rodder/driver here.

Starting in 2nd gear gains you zero performance advantage over starting in first. You're starting out with less mechanical advantage, so your zero to 60 will in most cases be slower than if you started in first gear. Yes, reducing the number of shifts "can" improve your 0-60 time, but you want more mechanical advantage, more torque, or both. If you're in sport mode, you'll shift quickly as is.

The entire point of the ability for a 2nd gear start is in low traction situations (deep snow, mud, very loose gravel, sand) where you may spin all four wheels. By reducing your mechanical advantage, you can apply more useful torque to the ground, which is part of why the manual recommends slowly rolling into the throttle, reducing wheel spin and getting you more traction. This has been done in automatic equipped cars for as long as they've existed. My old 1974 Trans Am 455 could start in second for very low traction. My 2000 Impala could in the Minnesota snow. It's very much the same as starting in 2nd or 3rd in a manual transmission car in the deep snow. It just reduces your leverage/gains you traction. It is in no way a "performance booster".
 
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