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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Good morning,

I am on my second Armada. My previous Armada was an 06. I have some hills around my house and my previous Armada would downshift when I tapped my brakes twice and it would relatively hold my speed during the descent. It was an 06 2wd, 2.97 rear end version. My new-to-me armada is a 2012 2wd, 2.97 version. Same size tires. It will not grade brake. Instead my truck will want to accelerate 15 mph or so while going down some of these hills. I have to either hold down my brakes or downshift myself.

Did the method of engaging a downshift change? Did I just forget how to do it? Did they remove it (i hope not)? I don't know.
 

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Hmm, My 08 will grade brake like that.

Actually, when I first got it I thought something was wrong with it as I'd never had a vehicle that did that. lol!
 
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Hmm, My 08 will grade brake like that.

Actually, when I first got it I thought something was wrong with it as I'd never had a vehicle that did that. lol!
Same... my 2005 grade brakes, and it was weird at first, because this is only the 2nd car I've ever owned with an autotragic transmission.

Check your ATF level using the FSM (factory service manual) directions. My AT acted wonky when the ATF level was low... like really low.
 
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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thanks

Transmission fluid level is good. I had it checked by the local Nissan dealer recently and they saw no issues with the amount or quality of the fluid. I am heading to the mountains this weekend. I'll have plenty of time to test it and I'll come back here with an update once I'm back. I'm hoping I'm just rusty on the steps to engage it and the mountains will give me opportunity to test it.

thanks
 

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You may want to reset your ECM so your shift points are reset.

Ive a 2012 QX and it still does the “grade braking” you mention so likely all newer models of armada and qx will have this. You can feel it instantly.
 

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This is interesting! I had no clue the Armada had this feature. I'll have to check it out the next time I have a large hill I'm going down. (Maybe I should get into manual one of these days.)

Thanks!
 
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its not going to "jolt" and make you feel like is has a Jake Brake or something, but you will notice a "drag" on the engine. there's also speed and angle sensor so it knows when you are going down hill or turning to subtly stay in a lower gear.. kinda acts like the tow mode switch is on (it tries to stay in a lower gear).
 

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Its a neat feature.
Tap your brakes twice going downhill to activate it, tap the gas to deactivate.

I will say, with my Bully Dog tuner I don't notice it working, maybe their tune takes it out....maybe I just got used to it.
But before the Bully Dog it worked every time.
 

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its not going to "jolt" and make you feel like is has a Jake Brake or something, but you will notice a "drag" on the engine. there's also speed and angle sensor so it knows when you are going down hill or turning to subtly stay in a lower gear.. kinda acts like the tow mode switch is on (it tries to stay in a lower gear).
That's good to hear. My Ford Fusion will automatically downshift if you have cruise control set and start gaining speed when going downhill. It basically keeps the same speed going up or downhill and I love it. While the grade braking would require you to stop cruise control, it's still better than the alternative of constantly speeding up until you feel it necessary to brake.

@1lowcab, I do have Bully Dog, so it will be interesting to see if they disable it. I'll have to give it a try the next time I'm driving downhill and see if I can activate it. I should also check out the owner's manual to make sure I know the proper procedure to activate it (but tapping it twice does seem easy enough).
 

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Hi Bigj, According to Nissan, Armadas will downshift when going down a grade if the transmission is set in the Tow/Haul Mode. I didn't know you had to activate this feature by tapping the brakes, but then, I am more familiar with 2nd generation Armadas which have a different, 7-speed transmission. Experiment with your Tow/Haul button and see if that solves your mystery.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
I’m back from my mountain trip. I could not get the transmission to downshift using the method I used in my old ‘06. With that vehicle I did not have to be in tow/haul mode to activate it, but will try it in this vehicle in the areas grade braking used to occur around my house and update this thread later today.

Thanks rusty for the idea
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
So, rusty tailpipe, that was it. The method changed sometime between ‘06 and’12.

A single 1/2 second depression while going downhill in tow mode activates a downshift.

To go back into your normal gear, there are two methods in the 2012:
1. Engage the gas pedal.
2. Wait until you drop below a certain speed. In my short testing while driving around town, that was 35mph. At that point it automatically shifted back into the gear I was in prior to engaging the brake.

Thanks for all the help everyone.
 
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