Accelerator lag?

Discussion in 'Clarity' started by KClark, Jan 6, 2019.

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  1. KClark

    KClark Active Member

    I’m still getting used to my 2 week old Clarity. I’ve only driven one electric vehicle, this one. But in all the reviews I watched before buying the one constant is always praise for EV low speed torque and acceleration so I’m surprised by the pedal response I’m getting. There is a very definite lag between pressing the accelerator and when the vehicle starts moving, I expected more of an smoothly instantaneous response. I especially notice this when pulling into my steep driveway. If I slow down to almost stopping before I turn up I have to press the pedal quite hard to get the car to move. If I gently press the pedal the car barely moves. If I turn into the driveway with some speed I can gently press the pedal and feel a response.

    Is this normal? Am I expecting too much?
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  3. David Towle

    David Towle Well-Known Member

    Take it out of Econ mode, if that's not enough put in Sport mode.
  4. KClark

    KClark Active Member

    So far I’ve only used the normal mode but I will experiment with sport this week.
  5. craze1cars

    craze1cars Well-Known Member

    I agree with you entirely. In the drag-racing world, I'd say this car has the slowest holeshot of any car I've ever driven, assuming starting at a dead stop/zero mph. But if you hit it while rolling at 5 or 10 mph? Suddenly it feels very normal. I still find it weird, and changing modes doesn't really matter from a true holeshot. Changing modes makes a BIG and noticable difference coming out of turns, rolling accelerations, throttle pedal response, etc, and sport can make it feel pretty peppy for most driving. But still not from a dead stop. It sorta harkens me back to the extreme turbo lag of the 1980's 4 cylinder turbos. Like you gotta wait for it to spool up for a sec, then it pulls. Yes it's normal. You'll get used to it.
  6. KentuckyKen

    KentuckyKen Well-Known Member

    Wow, totally different for me. I get instant response from a standing stop and feel like I can smoke (or is that electrocute?) most gasmobiles 0 to 30 mph.

    Bought in Feb of 2018 and build date is 12/17. No updates except for HV range bug.
    insightman likes this.
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  8. KClark

    KClark Active Member

    Yes, very similar to turbo lag.
    4sallypat likes this.
  9. MNSteve

    MNSteve Well-Known Member

    I have the same opinion. It seems more responsive than the traditional vehicles I've driven.
    LegoZ and insightman like this.
  10. My brother dailies a Mustang and he, unprompted, described my Clarity as “zippy”. That came as a bit of a shock!

    Sent from my iPhone using Inside EVs
  11. Viking79

    Viking79 Well-Known Member

    Use sport, or press pedal all the way to detent (click point) in Econ mode and it is pretty brisk.

    Only time there is lag is at high speeds on highway and the vehicle needs to declutch the ICE before accelerating. It takes maybe half a second.

    Also remember, this is a 4000 lb car with a not very powerful electrical motor. If you want instant response get a Model 3 or something.

    Edit: Econ or normal require a lot of "force" on the pedal as a psychological barrier to accelerating fast. It encourages efficiency. As I said, just push it to the detent in Econ and it is pretty brisk. You won't hurt anything doing so.
    insightman likes this.
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  13. DucRider

    DucRider Well-Known Member

    And keep in mind, most people talking about EV response/acceleration are referring to BEV's and not PHEV's. Since BEV's are powered only by the electric motors, they tend to be more powerful than those found in PHEV's.
    The "off the line acceleration" is limited by the car. Electric motors have 100% torque at 0 RPM, but you can't throw that at the driveline without something breaking (hopefully just the tires would lose traction). The BEV Clarity often struggles for traction if punched off the line (LRR tires have their downside).
    Econ vs normal vs sport in the Clarity only changes throttle mapping, not actual performance or power available. The Fit EV actually had three different HP levels (in addition to throttle mapping) in the three driving modes.
    insightman and 4sallypat like this.
  14. Linkmodo

    Linkmodo Member

    - Test drove Model 3, fun acceleration all the way to high way speed and beyond with no hesitation at start, agile too, but cost twice as much...
    - Drove my wife's Mustang ecoboost, steady torque all the way to highway speed and beyond, but slow to take off at first, not so good for city commute
    - Driving my Clarity, a lot of fun 0-30mph in the traffic, but then it slows down if speed gets picked up, and if I press the pedal harder in sports mode the nasty loud engine kicks in and ruins all the fun, and make my face turn red with everyone staring at my Honda generator going off the line. But I still love my Clarity to death.
    - My Z1000 had sub 3.5sec 0-60mph but I still find it not as much fun as EV cars (and it only gets 25-28mpg in the city...) ;) that's why I got rid of the thing and got my Clarity!!
  15. insightman

    insightman Well-Known Member Subscriber

    If you press the accelerator to the detent in ECON Mode, you're accelerating just as quickly as in SPORT Mode before it activates the ICE.
    228ra likes this.
  16. barnesgj

    barnesgj Active Member

    I also get instant reponse from stop. Bought in Dec '17 and have had no power response issues. There has been some discussion about potential problems with cars that are allowed to sit uncharged for months. Could this be one of them?
  17. jdonalds

    jdonalds Well-Known Member

    I purposly checked our Clarity today. It chirped the tires when I pushed, as quickly as I could without starting the ICE, the accelerator down to the detent. This is not a race car. It's an economic car. But in my opinion it has great acceleration. I run in Econ mode all the time around town.
    BobS and insightman like this.
  18. craze1cars

    craze1cars Well-Known Member

    This is a good example of quantifying a subjective thing such as “quick, or fast”. You say it chirped the tires and that proves it has “great acceleration.” This is a FWD car with low traction tires and all it can do is “chirp” them. In my mind it proves my point that it is a dog. By comparison If I shut off traction control in a 4 cylinder Accord and floor it from a standing start, the tires will break loose and torque will pull the front of the car sideways as the tires spin.

    Clarity will never do this out of the hole...far too much lag.

    Admittedly I have much more of a drag racing mentality, and most Clarity owners do not. I believe OP was referring to zero to 10 mph times...60 foot timeslips if you have ever drag raced at a track. Clarity will lose these races badly every time. Once it gets going it indeed feels normal and peppy enough. But not out of the hole for anyone accustomed to semi aggressive driving...there is substantial lag.

    We all have different perspectives, nobody is wrong or right. It’s largely subjective...though a timeslip at the track with the Clarity would prove me right Lol...
    Last edited: Jan 8, 2019
  19. RogerB

    RogerB Active Member

    People who consider themselves "semi-aggressive" drivers are usually "overly aggressive drivers who want to feel better about themselves." I had a friend who raced cars on track. He would pull some of the stupidest and most dangerous things I'd ever seen in a car. He considered himself "semi-aggressive." I shudder to think what he considered aggressive driving.
    petteyg359 likes this.
  20. KClark

    KClark Active Member

    Let me be clear, I'm not expecting a race car, I realize it's heavy and I'm not expecting drag racing speeds off the line. But what I did expect was that when I press the accelerator the car will respond, albeit slowly given constraints of weight and motor, as soon as I press it. What I'm experiencing is a lag between pressing the accelerator and seeing any movement at all. Of course I'm still a new owner and there's lots to learn with something so new to me, maybe I'm not pressing hard enough, maybe I'm expecting too much and have to adjust those expectations. But it's nice to have a place like this to learn from other owners.
  21. jdonalds

    jdonalds Well-Known Member

    This is what my response was attempting to answer. To me there is zero lag between me pushing the pedal down and the car responding. That's why I mentioned the chirp of the tires. How long is the lag on your Clarity?
    Johnhaydev and insightman like this.
  22. RogerB

    RogerB Active Member

    Does this happen at all speeds?

    Have you tried Sport mode and compared the responsiveness?
  23. KClark

    KClark Active Member

    The lag is long enough for me to say to myself, "Dang it, why isn't it moving?" and then it starts to move. Half second? One Second? Hard to quantify. I'm still experimenting and haven't really used Sport mode yet. Coming from a 2002 5.7L F150 that got about 16mpg if I drove very carefully and had to put about $40 of gas into every week, I'm still giddy about driving by that gas station every day without stopping and have mostly been in regular or Econ mode.

    One other nice thing, I've never had a vehicle with seat warmers and I had always brushed them off as kind of useless but using Econ mode when it's Southern CA winter cold in the morning (a bitter 40F) and having the seat warmers come on automatically has been a pleasant learning experience. Seat warmer alone keeps me almost comfortable without the heater on. But what I have always wanted is a heated steering wheel and if the Touring had that I probably would have spent the money.
    Last edited: Jan 10, 2019

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