Shut off TCS for a day!

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2016.5 CX-5 GT AWD titanium/black 2016 Miata Club ST MT white
I think the traction control system is broken in some of these cars and for some reason TCS drags the brakes when it is on. I would want you guys to check the brake temperature after a drive with TCS on and TCS off to see if the brakes are hotter with it on than with it off. I have no difference in mpg or pep when my TCS is off. Has anyone else tested their car?
I haven't done any extensive testing on my CX with the TCS off, but I have tested it a little. It APPEARS as if I'm getting better fuel economy with the TCS turned off. Night and day? No, but better.

Yes, I have tested the temp of my brakes in the past, using an instant read inferred thermometer. I took the CX out on an empty road, took the car up to 70 (TCS was on) and coasted to a stop then checked the temp of the rotors. All four were just slightly above ambient. I concluded that there was no rubbing or undue braking.
 

HardRightEdg

US 2020 CX-5 Touring AWD Soul Red
Read my post. I reset the computer AVG MPG calculation once after driving the first 80 miles with Sport mode on the way back to San Jose. Since the rest 275 miles was without Sport mode, hence the computer MPG calculation after the reset got higher. The manual calculation is for the entire 355-mile trip, with and without Sport mode.
I get it now. One thing I overlooked was that in Sport mode doing 70+ MPH revving high in 4th. or 5th. without hitting overdrive you logged you logged 36 MPGs over those 80 miles. That is certainly a big factor. As an aside, it is quite remarkable you would see those MPGs without hitting overdrive in a vehicle rated 40 MPGs highway along with the other quite remarkable readings.

I would, however, resist making generalizations such as this:

"I’m totally convinced turning the TCS off on Mazda vehicles somehow makes the engine peppier and more efficient (or less unnecessary braking by TCS), hence improves gas mileage significantly!"

In limited testing, my vehicle shows no noticeable difference per the MPG display, in one instance up to 40 miles on country roads with TCS off showing no meaningful difference. Someday on a road trip I can try a tankful with TCF OFF to see if I get better than the 31-33 MPG manual calculations I've seen in the past on straight-up expressway driving. I'm not holding my breath.

Also, I would resist making Mazda generalizations about the accuracy of the MPG display. I've experienced the contrary on a couple of occasions where it was overstated meaningfully when compared to a manual calculation--3/4 tank, same pump, no overfill past auto shut off. You will find other posters who share that experience. One car is not another car, even the same year and drive train.

As an FYI, my vehicle does in fact kick into 6th. gear overdrive in Sport mode when I reach a steady 70 MPH. I happened to be out on expressway today and tested this. In fact, it was settling in right around 2,500 RPMs in all four combinations of TCS off or on with Sport on or off. The only noticeable difference is that in Sport mode it resisted cylinder deactivation whether TCS was off or on.
 
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2018 CX-5 Sport
I believe the drivers saying their cars are peppier and getting better mpg, but I don't understand how it is possible. Eventually I will make a video of mine showing my mpg monitor while driving a loop with TCS off and the same loop with it on.
 

yrwei52

2016 Mazda CX-5 GT AWD w/Tech Pkg
Contributor
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Plano, Texas, USA
I believe the drivers saying their cars are peppier and getting better mpg, but I don't understand how it is possible. Eventually I will make a video of mine showing my mpg monitor while driving a loop with TCS off and the same loop with it on.
On the way to SFO on Hwy. 101 the day before yesterday, the instant MPG display on Yaris iA was showing 40 ~ 52 mpg with TCS off; whereas 35 ~ 45 mpg with TCS on driving @ 65 ~ 75 mph.
 
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CX5 GT
nobody seems to know how its possible but it is. That is my observation as well for the past week. No clue why though.
 
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2020 CX5 AWD
Oakland to OC with TCS off both directions. MPG suffered (27-29) b/c i was driving 70 to 80 when i could (101, 46/41, 5,605 and 405) except for getting thru LA that is. Car was noticeably more responsive using paddles/manual/DM mode..
 

Pitter

Pitter
Contributor
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2020 CX-5 Signature Azul Metalico
In response to this thread I tried shutting off the TCS for some kilometers including downhill decent with braking. Couldn't detect any difference,
 
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Ottawa, Ontario
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17 Mazda 6 GT
Ok, so I've been trying this for a few weeks, driving with the TCS off.
I have to hit the button everytime I start the car, but that's just a minor inconvenience.
First off, regarding performance changes, I can honestly say it has improved the throttle response compared to before.
It always felt like there was a slight delay from when I hit the gas pedal (which I found mildly irritating). Now it seems to respond quicker to my pedal inputs. I believe this is real, and not just my imagination. If I drive it a few times with the traction control on, it reverts back to the pedal delay I had before. I will definitely continue to turn off the traction control for the conceivable future.
With regards to gas mileage, I really can't say. My driving style, routes, weather etc change everyday, so comparing gas useage is pretty much impossible.
Overall I'd say it drives a little better with the TCS turned off.
 
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2015 CX-5 GT AWD w/Tech
Merry Christmas!

This entire TCS topic intrigued me so I tried it yesterday on a 250km trip to the cottage. I ended up with the best mileage I ever had at 6.7 l/100km at this speed. Usually it's 7.1-7.5. This was entirely with cruise set at 95km except in small towns. It will be interesting to see if I can turn it off on the way home and beat my all-time full tank average of 7.1. For clarity, once I did the trip at 80km/h as that seems to be the CX5 sweet spot and it was 6.6 l/100km but also took an extra 20 minutes.

Turning it off will be dependent on weather of course, yesterday there the roads were dry/wet but no snow/ice.
 

yrwei52

2016 Mazda CX-5 GT AWD w/Tech Pkg
Contributor
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Plano, Texas, USA
Merry Christmas!

This entire TCS topic intrigued me so I tried it yesterday on a 250km trip to the cottage. I ended up with the best mileage I ever had at 6.7 l/100km at this speed. Usually it's 7.1-7.5. This was entirely with cruise set at 95km except in small towns. It will be interesting to see if I can turn it off on the way home and beat my all-time full tank average of 7.1. For clarity, once I did the trip at 80km/h as that seems to be the CX5 sweet spot and it was 6.6 l/100km but also took an extra 20 minutes.

Turning it off will be dependent on weather of course, yesterday there the roads were dry/wet but no snow/ice.
The mpg, 6.7 l/100km or 35.1 mpg, on your 2015 CX-5 GT AWD w/Tech is impressive, even without turning the TCS off! My 2016 CX-5 GT AWD w/Tech can do over 30 mpg on the highway only if I drive under 70 mph in 75 ~ 80 mph speed zone which is kind of dangerous. Of course this’s before the finding of the TCS off thing.

Keep us posted on your findings after your return trip.
 
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CX5 GT
by the way I updated to the latest PCM and TCM versions for my car and now it runs great even without the need for TCS off. About the mpg I have to do a test and see how it is. But no more acceleration lags or hesitation. Plus the car now keeps a bit higher revs and gears vs prior. No drops in rpms or high gear at cornering etc. Pretty much eliminated the surging. When befote at corners it kept 3rd speed and very low rpms now it keeps more at 2nd gear and higher rpm for the corner.
May be this explains why some people dont see any different car behavior whether TCS is off or on? They could be at pcm versions which are latest. i.e 2020 and newer CX5s
 

yrwei52

2016 Mazda CX-5 GT AWD w/Tech Pkg
Contributor
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Plano, Texas, USA
by the way I updated to the latest PCM and TCM versions for my car and now it runs great even without the need for TCS off. About the mpg I have to do a test and see how it is. But no more acceleration lags or hesitation. Plus the car now keeps a bit higher revs and gears vs prior. No drops in rpms or high gear at cornering etc. Pretty much eliminated the surging. When befote at corners it kept 3rd speed and very low rpms now it keeps more at 2nd gear and higher rpm for the corner.
May be this explains why some people dont ser any different car behavior whether TCS is off or on?
What MY CX-5 do you have?
 
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CX5 GT
2018 with the funky CD feature :)
Now it runs the same as it was running with TCS off before. No need to turn off TCS for me now.
Will report on mpg when I gather some data. Have also to disconnect the batt sometime next week. in order to reset the fuel trims memory of the PCM as I am not sure if those would overwrite automatically over time after the PCM update. Only other thing left for me at present is the fuel pump recall and hoping Mazda will get the parts before next summer.
 
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2015 CX-5 GT AWD w/Tech
The mpg, 6.7 l/100km or 35.1 mpg, on your 2015 CX-5 GT AWD w/Tech is impressive, even without turning the TCS off! My 2016 CX-5 GT AWD w/Tech can do over 30 mpg on the highway only if I drive under 70 mph in 75 ~ 80 mph speed zone which is kind of dangerous. Of course this’s before the finding of the TCS off thing.

Keep us posted on your findings after your return trip.

Reporting back - so the return trip, with nearly the same conditions (a bit wetter) was not as good and took the average to 7.3 l/100km. That is very good but not remarkable or the best I've had which means the overall results are not conclusive - shutting TCS off doesn't matter. I'll leave it on the rest of the winter since this feature is one of the reasons we enjoy AWD and great winter handling. I'll try again on a trip with dry roads and warmer weather in the spring/summer.

It would be great to drive "legally" at 75-80 mph! Most people do on our "400" series highways in Ontario but the limit is 60 mph up to 70 mph in a few spots. The roads I take up north are 50 mph, except through towns. 50-55 mph is really where this vehicle seems to be the most economical.
 
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My experience was Sport mode or just being aggressive with gas (zoom zoom) went a long way toward eliminating those issues before I had the TSB applied. Driving in those fashions are not my preference for daily driving so I took a shot with the TSB.

The TSB has all but eliminated the lugging I had been experiencing in daily driving and when it does happen from time to time it is brief and mild. I still get bumps into gear up through 3rd. now if the gas is not just right but they are mild and not entirely unpleasant. Ironically, I did not have the problem the TSB was designed to fix (double bump in low gears) but now I do get that every once in a while. Go figure. Anyway, for me it is now "within tolerance" shall we say in light of the other virtues of the vehicle. I don't expect perfection for $26,275 + tax. Who could?

You didn't say how you were set up on day 2. I presume it was TCS on, Sport off otherwise what's the point? Perhaps driving in a more aggressive fashion on day 1 carried over to a heavier foot on day 2 which tends to eliminate these issues. Give it some time and report back. I firmly believe claims the vehicle adjusts to driving style are often exaggerated.
I actually think it does adjust to your driving style. Whenever I use the manual mode for a good bit, then when I go back to normal drive it hangs on to gears for longer. Just for one drive it’ll keep it like that though, cause i’ll quickly downshift if it starts doing that. But I do believe there is some adjustment to driver.
 
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Southeast MA
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2019 CX-5 GT W/PP
After having a little snow in the Northeast the other day. I noticed how the CX-5 with TCS on downshifted when going down-hill because of the conditions.
I will switch off the TCS in normal driving conditions, I do notice the peppiness with the TCS off and the extra MPG. Have a great 2022!!
 

ColoradoDriver

Gen-1 Kodo Design
Contributor
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Denver, CO
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2014 CX-5 Touring
Very interesting topic. I may have to try this. The only time I've ever turned off my TCS was when I got stuck in some snow.

As I am not the most educated on this topic, any downsides to driving with it off?
 

yrwei52

2016 Mazda CX-5 GT AWD w/Tech Pkg
Contributor
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Plano, Texas, USA
Very interesting topic. I may have to try this. The only time I've ever turned off my TCS was when I got stuck in some snow.

As I am not the most educated on this topic, any downsides to driving with it off?
For an average driver like me, I won’t turn the TCS off if the road is slippery (rain、snow、ice)