ESP Sport mode - Mercedes Benz SLK Forum

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#1 Old 10-07-2013
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ESP Sport mode

I've been driving the car with ESP set to sport these past few days.

I'm amazed at how much difference this makes to the feel of the car. It feels like a totally different car - more responsive and better handling, without any scary traction issues at sensible road speeds. I hadn't really realised just how much the ESP was dialing things back before given I wasn't exactly hooning it.

I've tried taking it up a steep, very twisty road and hitting the throttle quite hard and it didn't lose traction - which surprised me given the heavy warning notices in the owners manual.

It could be in my head, but I swear the car sounds better too. I'm wondering if this is due to differences in the ESP's torque management program in Sport mode and/or some influence on the flaps. The transmission also seems to work better when both it and the ESP are in sport mode.

Is this all in my head?

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#2 Old 10-08-2013
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Just attended AMG Driving Academy a few weeks ago. Part of the training was on the skid pad. The difference between the three ESP settings was an eye-opener. Quite a nanny when fully on. Tail stays in place and hardly any over-steer. You can force a bit of over-steer in sport mode but it recovers quickly. With ESP fully-off, half of us put the the car into a complete spin the first time. Was pretty happy that I got the hang of the "CPR" (correct/pause/recover) technique and could have spent an extra hour on the skid pad because it was a blast.

If you want to drive "Chris Harris hooligan style" then ESP would need to be fully-off. That said, for daily driving, I leave it on. Sport mode is fun, but, unfortunately, not much opportunity to use it in my area.

Transmission in sport mode changes the shift points (holds a gear to a higher range before up-shift) so you'll exceed the 2000 rpm "15-degree open" threshold and the higher flap-opening position points more often.
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#3 Old 10-08-2013
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Thanks for that - makes sense.

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Transmission in sport mode changes the shift points (holds a gear to a higher range before up-shift) so you'll exceed the 2000 rpm "15-degree open" threshold and the higher flap-opening position points more often.
yeah, I'm used to that in sport auto - but it was the perceived difference when ESP was in auto too that came as a surprise. Probably all in my head, but it sure sounded sweeter to me, and the transmission felt more in-tune with how I wanted to drive when both were in sport.

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#4 Old 10-11-2013
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Originally Posted by randombloke View Post
Thanks for that - makes sense.



yeah, I'm used to that in sport auto - but it was the perceived difference when ESP was in auto too that came as a surprise. Probably all in my head, but it sure sounded sweeter to me, and the transmission felt more in-tune with how I wanted to drive when both were in sport.
Well, not sure about sounding sweeter, by definitely a transformation in fun and handling around the peak district. I have so much fun since you pointed out the 'Sport Handling Mode' as opposed to just 'Sport'... all I can say is that my face hurts from smiling so much... thank you! My 55 feels completely balanced now
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