B gear for slowing Toyota Corolla - did I ruin my car?

Hi there, I have owned a 2014 Toyota Corolla LE for abit over a year… and recently (in the last few months) have I occasionally used the B gear (Braking) to help slow down when I get cut off by someone on the freeway (I drive on Houston freeways)… Now I’m reading B gear should only be used at lower speeds… And a few times, the gear has gotten bumped from S to B when I’m getting on the freeway (increasing my speed), it’s only been for a few seconds before I’ve realized it and put in back in S or D.

With those few random occasions and the braking mentioned above, have I ruined my car? It seems to be running fine, and it’s mostly driven in D mode, but I’m worried… TIA.

On a 2014 I expect you’ve got a computer controlled transmission, and it should be plenty smart enough to handle the situations you’ve presented ok. If this concerns you, just keep it in D and use the brakes to slow down.

I have an automatic in my 40+ year old truck, and use the lower gears in manual mode to slow down sometimes, never had a problem. If the engine seems to race when shifting to B, that probably means you were going a little too fast for B. Now you know that’s too fast for B. Otherwise, suggest to not worry about it.

For Pete’s sake, leave the thing in drive and use that thing hanging under the dash called a brake pedal just like everyone else.

I have no idea what B gear (braking even means).
I did the Google thing and B gear is what most people would consider low in a normal automatic transmission. Toyota’s B gear in the CVT would be best used descending in mountain areas to save brake wear. It is not meant to replace brakes in traffic in my point of view.


Those gear positions were put there for the driver to use when needed. You can use the “S” position to the left of “D” for engine braking or “B” for maximum engine braking. Using these gear positions changes the gear ratio in the CVT transmission. This causes wear similar to the wear each time you accelerate, quite insignificant.

“B gear?” Is this a US-spec vehicle? Most shift patterns are of the “PRND[432]L” variety, where you go from park, to reverse, to neutral, to drive, to increasingly lower gears. Have no clue which gear “B gear” is.

Perhaps someone should have read the owners manual.

“S” is for sport mode, “B” is for braking. I am pretty sure this is a CVT transmission and these settings replace 3rd gear and low gear. S keeps the transmission in lower gear ratios for more power and quicker acceleration. B even lower to assist with braking. The engine does have over rev protection, probably by limiting the fuel at high RPM’s so no harm no foul using these settings. If you are concerned about what they may do to your engine, just do not use them. Keep it in drive and use the brakes.

Our Prius had B for regenerative braking to charge the battery in long downhill periods. But u could play with it on level ground. Does our new civic which as a cvt trans also have it? Might have to look. Or maybe Honda is just odd.

I was confused until I read Nevada’s post. Apparently manufacturers are finding it necessary to emulate trannys with multiple gears in the CVTs in order to placate owners. I find it ironic that they’ve spent years and millions developing this wonderous new piece of technology only to have to make changes to make it behave like the one it replaces. :grin:


Heavy Houston traffic or anyplace is not the time to be taking the vehicle out of drive and trying to slow down with the engine braking. Car in drive, foot brake to avoid crash and both hands on the steering wheel. There are places you can play with your vehicle.

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Your completely right B mode is to help you down hills it is no way supposed to be used as an automatic brake when you get cut off lmao. I wonder how people like her get a license I have a 2014 Corolla and I have never used B mode once, S mode on the other hand is q different story hahaha.

Also quite stupid if you have a brake pedal lol and your wrong about the modes anyways, S mode is not for slowing down and B mode is to help you on long down hill sections so you don’t have to ride the brake. switching your cars mode on an automatic to slow down when you get cut off or for emediat slow downs is retarded and takes way longer to do then simply hitting the normal brake with your foot which is already down there, why take your hand off the wheel to shift down to slow down fast it makes no sense and she will end up rear ending someone driving like that.

If you’re done being boorish in this, your first foray into posting here, perhaps you’d be interested in reading the site rules: