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SHIFTRONIC shift function

I recently took advantage of the governments’ Car Allowance Rebate System program by trading in my 1997 Mercury Grand Marquis on a 2009 Hyundai Sonata. I got $3500 for the Merc, do you think I got screwed? If yes: How bad? Secondly (or thirdly depending) the Sonata has a 5 speed automatic transmission with a feature they call SHIFTRONIC shift function. I read the owners manual on this feature but didn’t make much sense of it; it seems to have something to do with manually shifting gears. My questions about this feature are: 1. How do I properly utilize this feature? and 2. Why would I ever want to?

Michael Lee

Shiftronic is an auto transmission. If you put it in drive and never use the other features, no problem. On your other auto cars how often did you put them in 1, 2, or 3, or did you just use “D”? Shiftronic is just another way to access the lower gears instead of having the trans decide when to shift.

Your 1997 Grand Marquis probably would have not made $3500 on a private sale. These cars are a dime a dozen at around $1995 on used car lots all over the United States. If you got cash instead of just a trade-in value then you made out extremely well. Shiftronic has been around for years in one form or another and the best thing to do is just use “D” and drive.

You can use the shiftronic function if you wish to “manually” shift gears. But if you wanted to manually shift gears you’d have bought a car with a manual transmission, right?

Use it or ignore it. It’s up to you. The car will probably get better gas mileage if you let the automatic transmission decide when to shift.

The one situation I think Shiftronic etc. is useful is going down a long hill. You can shift to a lower gear and use engine braking to prevent overheating your brakes.

Thank you to everyone who took time out of your busy day to answer these questions for me. I now feel better about both my trade-in and my use of “D” for the vast majority of my driving needs. I appreciate your kindnesses.

"But if you wanted to manually shift gears you’d have bought a car with a manual transmission, right? " You are probably right, I don’t intend to start an argument, but I prefer a torque converter to a clutch any time.

The shiftronic feature might be fun for a novelty, but it’d probably grow old after awhile

“…do you think I got screwed? If yes: How bad?”

Depends upon how much you paid for the Hyundai. If you paid MSRP, then yes. If you paid $1,000 or more under MSRP (prior to the $3,500 "trade-in allowance), then no.

PS: Leave it in drive and forget about it.