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  1. #1

    Annoying Acceleration & Rumble

    I have owned my Altima Hybrid for 2-1/2 months and have a little over 2000 miles on it.

    Since we've had it, we have experienced several annoying characteristics:

    1) After accelerating up to speed, between 45 and 55 mph, as I begin ease off of the throttle to maintain my speed, there is sudden (and annoying) drop in power output, and I feel a lurch forward with this sudden change (decrease) in acceleration. Has anyone else experienced that? is this normal operation for a hybrid?

    I have taken my car to the dealer to try to demonstrate this to them, but the problem is slightly intermittant. It happens about 80% of the time, but not 100% of the time. I plan to take it back and leave it with them.

    2) The car rumbles when I am driving around under light throttle. Is this normal? (This is different from the vibration you feel when the engine starts)

    3) The best mileage I have achieved so far is 30.5 mpg, with several tanks being below 30; 27 to 29. I have been driving with a light foot on the throttle, and slowing well in advance of red lights. I have not been able to get the mid 30's kind of mileage that I read that others are getting. Is it my car, or is my driving really that bad?

    The car we brought home from the dealer is not the one we test drove. When we test drove the Altima Hybrid, we were very pleased with its performance compared to the Camry hybrid, and quite excited to buy one. The car we test drove seemed to drive much smoother than the one we now own. Do I need to take it back to the dealer and tell them to fix it, or is this car operating the way it is supposed to, and we just did not notice these quirks on our test drive? (Please spare me the lecture about needing to test drive the car before I accept it - I've already figured that one out.)

    Rob In Bakersfield

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  3. #2
    Junior Member
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    Nov 2006
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    rob in bakersfield, you really need to test drive your car before you buy it

    anyways....

    1. the lurching feeling is from the CVT programming to maximize fuel economy. i think if you lighten up on the throttle at a slower rate, you won't feel this sensation

    2. when you say light throttle, do you mean driving at a low speed? also, is the car in EV mode? for me, it does rumble a bit when i'm going slow and EV is not engaged, doesn't happen very often though

    3. what car did you drive before this and what type of mileage were you getting? it does take some learning for this car, but 30 mpg seems low. you do have to drive somewhat slower, but you've said that you have been trying to keep a light throttle. it could be the car?

    i don't think all of the cars are identical in the way they were built. the NAH i test drove at one dealership made me have 2nd thoughts on the car whereas when i finally decided i wanted the NAH, i ordered a different car and it was incredibly smooth!!!! absolutely loved it!

  4. #3
    Langjie,

    Thanks for the feedback.

    1. I have tried doing exactly what you suggest. As the reaches cruising speed (45 to 55 mph), I slowly lift my foot off the throttle. As I do this, the power meter suddenly drops from where it was (say jsut below the 50) to zero. This behavior is somewhat intermittant, but it happens most fo the time. I don't think this is the CVT.

    2. Yes, driving at low speed, say 35 to 45 mph. Usually the engine is running. When car is running in EV mode, it's smooth as glass, and quiet. My car doesn't run in EV mode very much. How slowly do I need to accelerate?

    3. My previous car was a 93 Corolla automatic. Great car!!! I was getting about 26 mpg in town, and 35 highway. I drove my Corolla a little more aggressively than the NAH, but not much.

    Interesting to hear about your experience driving 2 different NAHs. May be I have a lemon.

  5. #4
    Junior Member
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    Jul 2007
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    Rob, I get the same experience too, like sometimes when start, it will keep going really fast like you can't make it stop, but once u release the paddle to a certain point, the whole power output goes to zero and you can feel it. It happened sometimes to me not all the time. I wonder is there problem with that???

    But I do get good mileage around 35.5 MPG, and there is a little over 2000 miles on it, just like yours.

  6. #5
    Junior Member
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    Nov 2006
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    i would probably say take the car to the dealer and see if they can do an ECU update.

    for comparison purposes...when i drive my sisters civic, i get the same mileage as the NAH (around 35) and i do drive the civic (or at least it feels like) a little harder.

    you seem to be 3-4 MPG off

    oh yeah, are you just reading your economy off of the computer or do you calculate it per fill up? the computer isn't always accurate

  7. #6
    i calculate the mpg per fill up. Yah, I've noticed the computer on the car is a little off - on the high side.

    Thanks for your suggestion.

    Rob

  8. #7
    f77126,

    Hey it's nice to hear I'm not alone in this. I was wondering if it's a manufacturing defect or a design flaw. I like Langjie's suggestion about reprogramming the ECU.

    So far the folks at the dealership have not been too helpful. All they say is that you can't compare hybrids to other cars, that they are a different beast, and that my car is normal. I can't imagine a good automotive engineer designing a car that drives like mine.

  9. #8
    Junior Member
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    Jul 2007
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    well I am also happy that I am the only one either. Of course the dealer people will tell u like you have no problem, they trying to save some $ and i guess it's pretty annoying to find out the problem. To me the problem isn't that bad, still pretty smooth overall. Good luck with ur altima

  10. #9
    f77126,

    Thanks. Good Luck with yours too.

    Rob

  11. #10
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
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    So far the only thing that we have had to adjust to, is the slight change in sound when the ICE kicks in. My wife mainly drives this car and at first was annoyed by this but has since adjusted to it. No other problems yet and plan to take it on a longer trip soon, so hopefully it remains problem free.
    It does handle nice and has adequate power when needed. Still on the first tank of gas with 556 miles driven. It is like driving a golf cart in the EV mode

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