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Old 2nd August 2022, 19:00   #1
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Default Hill-driving in an AMT

A lot of cars with AMT transmission do NOT have Hill Hold? As the AMT's just have a D-N-R shift and don't have "P", how safe is it to drive them on inclines or park them on inclines?

Some AMT's have a HILL-HOLD but what about the cars without Hill-Hold and AMT when driving on hills? How safe/unsafe is it to rely only on the Handbrake only?

How reliable would this be after say 3-5-7 years use to rely only on handbrakes for incline parking?
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Old 2nd August 2022, 20:36   #2
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Default re: Hill-driving in an AMT

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Originally Posted by VPJ74 View Post
How reliable would this be after say 3-5-7 years use to rely only on handbrakes for incline parking?
An AMT is essentially a MT car with the clutch actuated by a electric/hydraulic actuator instead. While parking on inclines, slot the vehicle into D mode or Reverse (depending on which side of the car is facing the incline), engage the parking brake and switch off the vehicle. The procedure is more or less similar to how we park manuals.

Solely relying on handbrakes while parking on inclines is not recommended for any vehicle - be it an MT or an AMT. We never know when the parking brake might give away on inclines.
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Old 2nd August 2022, 21:14   #3
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Default re: Hill-driving in an AMT

In general they are not that kind to your clutch plate. As you pull away from a dead stop, being as gentle as possible with A pedal will help preserve the clutch.

However remember clutch plate is just that, it can be replaced for not much money and generally won't fail without giving you adequate warning, rolling back is certainly not a good idea.

I do have to tell you that AMT is far better at this than a newbie driver or someone who has not driven in the hills much. There are places like Mall parking exits for instance that can give AMT a real workout!
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Old 2nd August 2022, 21:54   #4
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Default re: Hill-driving in an AMT

Usually budget cars are equipped with AMTs. Hence, they may not feature hill hold control and hill descend control systems. Because of this, the car could roll back or forward on hill starts. So, when you start the car after stopping on an incline or a descent, use the hand brake to stop roll back or forward. Of late, several new generation AMT cars come with technologies like hill hold control and hill descent control.
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Old 2nd August 2022, 23:20   #5
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Default re: Hill-driving in an AMT

I drive an old Suzuki Grand Vitara AT and drive it extensively in the hills. I can count the number of times I had to use a hand brake while going up slope, on my finger tips. Slot into D and simply keep the brake pedal pressed, lift and the car doesn't roll backwards but moves up as you input the accelerator. No issues ever. The only problem I have faced driving an AT on steep, off road slopes is that at times the car will come to a complete stop while going up and will take a some seconds before deciding to keep moving up.
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Old 3rd August 2022, 08:38   #6
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Default re: Hill-driving in an AMT

Furyrider has covered the parking instructions. In stop-and-go, remember to use the handbrake judiciously (as you would in an MT too), else it will lead to overheating.
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Old 3rd August 2022, 09:48   #7
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Default Re: Hill-driving in an AMT

If there is a sports mode, use it. I find the on the Tiago AMT, the sports mode makes the accelerator response pretty fast.


Other than that, use the handbrake when starting from an incline. There is no harm in using it.
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Old 3rd August 2022, 10:38   #8
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Default Re: Hill-driving in an AMT

Quote:
Originally Posted by VPJ74 View Post
Some AMT's have a HILL-HOLD but what about the cars without Hill-Hold and AMT when driving on hills? How safe/unsafe is it to rely only on the Handbrake only?
Quote:
Originally Posted by sagarpadaki View Post
I find the on the Tiago AMT, the sports mode makes the accelerator response pretty fast.
Which AMTs have hill-hold? Most cars rely on the AMTs creep function to act as hill-hold.

furyrider has mentioned the right method while parking a AMT-equipped car on an incline. At the risk of repetition, ensure you slot into R/A before you turn off the engine.

The other important thing with AMTs (just as with manuals):

Eg. if you decide to park the car on an incline and keep the engine running (say, driver wants to take a break and step out while passengers sit inside), ensure you keep a stone next to the tyre to stop the car from rolling. In the absence of P, the car can very roll back - you can't rely just on the handbrake.

Just this year, there was an accident at Amba ghat where two people lost their life. Reports say, the husband stepped out to take pics of the valley while the wife and kid were inside the car. He had engaged the handbrake, but yet the car rolled back, and fell into the valley.

https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/...w/90161074.cms
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Old 3rd August 2022, 11:13   #9
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Default Re: Hill-driving in an AMT

I have been driving AMT cars (earlier Nano XTA and now Kwid Easy-R) from 2016 and have taken them to various places.

I never had issues with the missing hill hold feature. The trick is to use the hand brake as and when required, for that brief second when you switch your foot from brake pedal to accelerator pedal. Be gentle on the throttle though. Never hold an AMT car on incline using the accelerator pedal and in 1st gear. It just fries the clutch.

For parking on inclines, use D or R along with the handbrake, as be the case.
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Old 3rd August 2022, 11:44   #10
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Default Re: Hill-driving in an AMT

Quote:
Originally Posted by VPJ74 View Post
A lot of cars with AMT transmission do NOT have Hill Hold? As the AMT's just have a D-N-R shift and don't have "P", how safe is it to drive them on inclines or park them on inclines?

How reliable would this be after say 3-5-7 years use to rely only on handbrakes for incline parking?
I have used Tata Zest AMT for roughly 6 years, so I have some experience to address your queries.
When I bought the car, I was new to AMT but I did know what to expect as I had the habit of reading TeamBhp (was not a member then). Like everyone in Bangalore, took my first holy trip to Nandi Hills on a weekend. To my horror, there was a traffic jam and vehicles were stagnant in the last few hairpins and I completed my AMT crash course of driving in hills.

Now coming to the questions, it is safe to drive on inclines, however, one needs to know what should be done. For milder slopes, handbrake can be used to keep the car stationary. However, if the slope is steep and you have vehicles immediately behind you, handbrake will not be sufficient. In this scenario, one needs to use the brakes. But by the time you move your feet from brake to accelerator, there is a possibility that the car could roll back. So I use the left leg for brake and right for the accelerator in this extreme scenario. The exit ramp in the mall is also steep and you have traffic jams, so one needs to watch out for the AMT cars in front and keep sufficient gap just in case.

Parking is just like manual cars, use the hand brake for flat surfaces. Keep in drive or reverse when parking on a slope depending on the direction. While parking on the slope, the wheel direction is also important, attaching a picture below for reference.

Name:  slope_parking.png
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Driving an AMT car requires excessive use of handbrakes, even while driving in regular day-to-day traffic to prevent the car from rolling back even at a mild incline. But I never faced any issue due to a non-working handbrake even after 6 years.
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Old 3rd August 2022, 12:47   #11
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Default Re: Hill-driving in an AMT

Quote:
Which AMTs have hill-hold? Most cars rely on the AMTs creep function to act as hill-hold.
I think modern days ATM's like Tata Nexon, and Suzuki Baleno also have a hill hold (correct me if I am wrong). Sure about Nexon though.

Two years back when I first tried my hands on AMT; it was my friend's Tiago which was parked in the basement parking (-1 parking).To come out on the road there was a huge inclination path to pass through. when I was on the inclination suddenly I needed to stop because of another vehicle. Till this moment it was all OK for me (except for some weird feeling in my left leg as it is trying to press the imaginary clutch). The moment I remove my right foot from the brake to accelerate, the car starts moving back. All of a sudden (in a panic) I pressed the brake and realized that I am in AMT. Fortunately, there was no car behind me. I tried again and failed.
Then I decided to use my left leg to press the brake while my right foot took care of the accelerator. I came out of the situation and explained this to my friend.

He then guided me to use the handbrake in this kind of situation.

Anyways, Hill Hold is very much necessary for AMT's.

As rightly posted above, for parking, the use of D or R along with a handbrake should help.
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Old 3rd August 2022, 13:24   #12
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Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by wanderernomad View Post
I drive an old Suzuki Grand Vitara AT and drive it extensively in the hills.
Thank you.

Does your Vitara have an AMT or a proper CVT/TC/DSG? I'm curious about how AMT users manage slopes while driving AND parking?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Meph1st0 View Post
Isn't the illustration accurate for the USA? In India, we drive on the LEFT side hence the curb is on LEFT and thus the wheel alignment should be opposite of what's shown?

Last edited by libranof1987 : 3rd August 2022 at 13:42. Reason: Merging back-to-back posts. Kindly use the Edit/Quote+ functionality to quote multiple posts.
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Old 3rd August 2022, 13:45   #13
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Default Re: Hill-driving in an AMT

Quote:
Originally Posted by libranof1987 View Post
Which AMTs have hill-hold? Most cars rely on the AMTs creep function to act as hill-hold.
Maruti has made hill hold standard in most of their AMT's now. The S-Presso has been recently updated with full ESP + hill hold on the AMT variant, the Celerio & Wagon R as well now have standard hill hold on AMT variants.

Just the creep function will hold the car in small inclines but will not be sufficient for the steep ones where hill assist is really required.

Hill hold is a sub set of full ESP and even Maruti actually uses ESP hardware but enable only ABS + Hill assist for the entry cars (S-Presso is an exception and a pleasant surprise)

Last edited by fiat_tarun : 3rd August 2022 at 13:46.
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Old 3rd August 2022, 14:12   #14
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Default Re: Hill-driving in an AMT

Quote:
Originally Posted by VPJ74 View Post
Isn't the illustration accurate for the USA? In India, we drive on the LEFT side hence the curb is on LEFT and thus the wheel alignment should be opposite of what's shown?
In India you can park on any side , so one needs to understand how it is done in US and UK. But yes the direction of tyres should be such that if the car rolls (forward or backward depending on the slope) then it should hit the curb/kerb.
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Old 3rd August 2022, 17:47   #15
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Default Re: Hill-driving in an AMT

Quote:
Originally Posted by libranof1987 View Post
At the risk of repetition, ensure you slot into R/A before you turn off the engine.
Can you pls clarify why it has to be done "before" ? If the AMT is similar to a manual but with an automated clutch, then what is the risk of doing the above "After" as in manual we can switch off the car -> apply hand-brake -> slot into a gear?

Thanks.
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