better for car - higher revs or more gear changes - elise s2 - LotusTalk - The Lotus Cars Community
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post #1 of 28 (permalink) Old 07-12-2019, 04:21 AM Thread Starter
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better for car - higher revs or more gear changes - elise s2

random question of the day. (elise s2 or other car owners)

is it better to do higher revs between gears or lower revs and more gear switching?

i tend to drive my car slow and when 'babying it' it, i change gears every 10 mph (1st get to 10, 2nd to 20, etc). and yes, i do know that 2nd gear goes right about 62mph.


so while driving to the grocery store this morning i thought maybe i'm thinking about this all wrong. which is better for babying the car, more gear shifts or higher revs. more gear shifts would put more use on the clutch. higher revs might not be much more wear and tear on the block.

what do you think?

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post #2 of 28 (permalink) Old 07-12-2019, 06:13 AM
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I've always considered cars a utilitarian object designed and built to have a purpose. I think you should drive the car in whatever way brings you the most enjoyment. The stock engine in the Elise (assuming it's in good mechanical shape) will run continuously for hours and hours anywhere below about 5,000 rpm and never even notice. Running an engine with high cylinder pressures at low rpm's (such as when driving in higher gears at low rpm and low mph) can "load up" the cylinders since the fuel/air mixtures will tend to be higher and the engine efficiency is lower. At lower rpm you don't have as much oil flowing through the bearings, so not as much heat is removed, even if there is enough oil to lubricate everything properly. There also isn't as much coolant flow, and even though it's a small engine, the radiator is a long ways away.
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post #3 of 28 (permalink) Old 07-12-2019, 06:21 AM Thread Starter
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"There also isn't as much coolant flow, and even though it's a small engine, the radiator is a long ways away."

i'll wait for others to reply, but just to comment on this. since the fluid should always be at the engine area (running a big circle to cool off) - isn't having it at the other side of the car a benefit - causes it to cool off more in the transportation?

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post #4 of 28 (permalink) Old 07-12-2019, 06:45 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CMP View Post
"There also isn't as much coolant flow, and even though it's a small engine, the radiator is a long ways away."

i'll wait for others to reply, but just to comment on this. since the fluid should always be at the engine area (running a big circle to cool off) - isn't having it at the other side of the car a benefit - causes it to cool off more in the transportation?
There will be a nominal amount of cooling that takes place while the coolant is moving to and from the radiator; I'm not so concerned about how efficiently the system cools the fluid, my concern is more that the lower flow can cause localized hot spots in the engine. That was why I mentioned the radiator being far away because it makes moving the fluid more difficult, especially at low rpm when the engine isn't pumping the fluid very much.
Also, I don't think driving the car like you say you do is going to ruin anything, far from it. You were posing a question about our thoughts on a couple of different driving styles and how that affects the engine. I think the difference in engine wear and tear between babying the car and driving in a spirited manner would be negligible. Once again, I suggest driving it in a way that keeps a smile on your face; that's what she was meant to do.

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post #5 of 28 (permalink) Old 07-12-2019, 06:48 AM
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The engine in this car is an econobox engine in millions of toyotas. There are tons of celica GTS out there that went beyond 200k miles, and none of them are babying the engine.

My thoughts are to pay more attention to RPM and don't bog the engine- An upshift shouldn't put you at or below idle.

"Give a man a match, and he'll be warm for a minute, but set him on fire, and he'll be warm for the rest of his life."
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post #6 of 28 (permalink) Old 07-12-2019, 07:49 AM
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I may be wrong but the OP may have been asking what is the lowest RPM without bogging, ie. what is the lowest RPM you should avoid by not going into the next higher gear. I generally think I keep my revs above 2500 - 3000 most the time. I have the Torque app which records peeks and I see that I get up to 5500 on spirited days. I consider that babying the car.....

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post #7 of 28 (permalink) Old 07-13-2019, 07:39 AM
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You can bounce off the rev limiter all day with these motors. Babying it WILL NOT do it ANY good.

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post #8 of 28 (permalink) Old 07-13-2019, 07:59 AM Thread Starter
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so, just to recap.

don't worry about changing gears. just punch it and when it hits 8k rpm, then change. rinse and repeat all day long.

using the clutch is for sissies.

that is what i hear from everyone. is this correct?

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Last edited by CMP; 07-13-2019 at 08:15 AM.
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post #9 of 28 (permalink) Old 07-13-2019, 08:12 AM
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Shift where ever you're comfortable with as long as you don't lug the engine. If you're under 2500 RPM or so and try to accelerate or push up a hill by opening the throttle alot, you will put very large stresses on the engine's components. Think of it like trying to ride up a hill in a high gear on a bike, it takes alot of force from your legs and isn't good for your knees. Instead you should downshift to get an appropriate mechanical advantage.
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post #10 of 28 (permalink) Old 07-13-2019, 08:57 AM
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My concern with not revving the engine between shifts, is oil temperature. You need to put some load on the engine to get the temp up. I never go under 3000rpm when driving, and rev it to 5-6000 all the time.

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post #11 of 28 (permalink) Old 07-13-2019, 09:12 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
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Instead you should downshift to get an appropriate mechanical advantage.
along the lines of my original question... i hear downshifting costs more to replace than brake pads. (time, money and energy)

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post #12 of 28 (permalink) Old 07-13-2019, 09:23 AM
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Quote:
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My concern with not revving the engine between shifts, is oil temperature. You need to put some load on the engine to get the temp up. I never go under 3000rpm when driving, and rev it to 5-6000 all the time.
Revving the engine to warm the oil kind of defeats the purpose of warming the oil. Just be gentle until the oul is warm and then do what you want.
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post #13 of 28 (permalink) Old 07-13-2019, 09:28 AM
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Quote:
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Quote:
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Instead you should downshift to get an appropriate mechanical advantage.
along the lines of my original question... i hear downshifting costs more to replace than brake pads. (time, money and energy)
Downshifting for the appropriate acceleration-good

Downshifting instead of braking - bad

I often coast to a stop in gear, and downshift to accelerate if I don't get to a complete stop but don't downshift to slow down. Brake pads are made for that.
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post #14 of 28 (permalink) Old 07-13-2019, 09:54 AM
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2 B or not 2 B ?
rhetorical...…………………………...
You say you tend to baby the car...…….so [B]YOUR [B] answer is to shift early/gingerly as your have been doing....it's called 'short shifting'...…...it's also called driving how a grandma drives. ….and don't we all want to buy a used car that was driven by a grandma ?
so you may make the engine last a little longer by babying it.
some here are giving you all this tech stuff about revs/oil flow/coolant flow etc......right.....like it's going to make that much difference...….in reality they are correct.....but only at the ninth decimal place.
if you're not getting a predetonation/ping out of the engine for whatever gear you're in when you accelerate, you're not in too high a gear.
now if you drive like me...…...drive the pi$$ out of it....why else own these cars? else ways buy a famry camry.
drive it hard dude! what needed fixing will break and then that gets fixed !! how else does one find the weak link in the proverbial chain.
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post #15 of 28 (permalink) Old 07-13-2019, 10:45 AM
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Revving the engine to warm the oil kind of defeats the purpose of warming the oil. Just be gentle until the oul is warm and then do what you want.
I guess I should have been more clear. I do take great care in warming up the engine before I get on it. Most of you guys do not have an oil temp gauge in your car, so you have no idea of what the temp is at any given time, but if you lug the car around all day at low rpm, you will not get it warm and in turn do more damage than if you rev it.

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Last edited by CRG53; 07-13-2019 at 12:33 PM.
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post #16 of 28 (permalink) Old 07-13-2019, 11:07 AM
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One of my first mods was an oil temp gauge. It’s surprising how long it takes to get up to temp after the coolant is warm.

Once the oil is up to temp I routinely shift at 5k or more and I’m rarely below 3k. These engines like to rev!
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post #17 of 28 (permalink) Old 07-13-2019, 11:35 AM Thread Starter
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what needed fixing will break and then that gets fixed !!
lol. same thing my dad said back in highschool before i ran the oil out / blew a piston out of my stepmoms car.


"i heard the tapping and it was getting worse, but i know you said drive it until it breaks and we can repair what broke" they weren't too thrilled with that response.

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post #18 of 28 (permalink) Old 07-14-2019, 03:46 AM
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scientifically speaking, revs are worse that shifts. Especially if the shifts are done deliberately to allow the transmission syncrhos to do their job. higher RPM creates more wear and stress(forces multiply at the square of RPM).

Practically speaking: Letting the car warm up before you get into it is always smart. Drive the car normally, not winding out every gear when you are not in the mood to do so. Wind it out when you are. Try to short shift redline a bit as these engines don't have bulletproof top ends, however when the need arises go for it.
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post #19 of 28 (permalink) Old 07-14-2019, 09:59 AM
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My concern with not revving the engine between shifts, is oil temperature. You need to put some load on the engine to get the temp up. I never go under 3000rpm when driving, and rev it to 5-6000 all the time.
? ......the beginning of this quote

As a Floridian I rarely have to fire up my Lotus at an ambient temp below 55 degrees ....so this thread and those giving their advice should perhaps be addressing what air temps they start at.
A) Once the oil is a nice temp.........because you've let the engine warm up and....repeat ...and you have been driving a while..........not reving the engine between shifts should cause the oil temp to drop maybe a zillionth of a degree [ninth decimal place thing]......maybe a whole three zillionths when the engine is "cold" (unspecified temp).....but to give everyone here some credit........I'll bet if you're in an area where it's maybe below 40 Fahrenheit you'd let the car idle for some time before starting out
B) OK......let us now digress into what oil weights we should all use at what temps
C) who knows.......this may lead us to > "should we or should we not run Water Wetter in our rads ??
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post #20 of 28 (permalink) Old 07-14-2019, 12:59 PM
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Boe REV 300 Supercharger.
Boe DMC Ultimate header.
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Boe TOC wet sump oil pan.
Boe Fuel surge tank.
Boe Oil catch can.
Boe HP fixed rotors with Ferodo DS 2500 pads.
BWR Larini Group B Muffler.
BWR Street/Track Anti roll bar.
Mocal rear mounted oil cooler.
V2 steering arms,
Nitron Singles 425/550.
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