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Discussion Starter #1
Ok, call me silly, call me old fashioned... whatever...

I am REALLY not liking the idea of drive by wire.

I don't think I've ever driven a DBW car before... is my 2002 Crown Vic drive by wire? I've never actually bothered to take the beauty cover off yet...

My worry is that.. the pedal feel will be different. I like... (NEED) there to be some sort of resistance to the pedal...


I'm not so concerned with the fear that the car might floor itself without my control... heheh.. but more so that the gas pedal will feel too light and friggin weird.

Is there any way to convert the Solstice to use a throttle cable? hahah...

Perhaps I can pull the TPS and stuff off a 2.2 and hook it up to the 2.4?


Todd,
2006 Pontiac Solstice (On Order)
2002 Ford Crown Victoria LX-P74
1997 Pontiac Grand Am GT (For Sale!)
1987 Pontiac Fiero SE / V6 5-Speed
1987 Pontiac Fiero SE / V6 Auto
1984 Pontiac Fiero 2m4 SE WS6
1981 Pontiac TransAm WS6
1973 Volkswagen Type-2 Transporter (hippie bus)
 

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Want more resistance in the pedal? Get a bigger spring. maybe an oil shock to slow the return or add resistance to movement without a faster return.
We have electric fuel pumps anyway. and direct injection on some. Just leave the steering wheel and the emergency/parking brake mechanically connected and its all good.
 

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The Crown Vic isn't Drive-by-wire yet.

As far as I'm aware, the only Ford branded product (excluding other brands in the Ford family) is the 2005 Mustang. I've also heard that the throttle response is slow in comparison to the standard throttle that we've all come to like. Reprogramming the computer, or installing a chip, will supposedly change the throttle response of the Mustang so that it's much more responsive.

I haven't personally seen it, but it sounds right based on what Ford does with the rest of their cars (making them laid back instead of on-the-edge driving machines).

I had to modify my Crown Vic because 9.5 0-60 was too slow. I changed the rear gears and the differential and now it has a 6.5 second 0-60. I think that's very respectable for a 4000 lb car, but it might not be enough. ;)
 

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TBW is great depending on who's TBW system they're using. The one on my Sentra is just flawless and transparent. The pedal does not feel different at all from a traditional throttle. The deal is that it has more response. The computer interprets what you want in performance depending on where the pedal is. Then it just goes ahead and opens the throttle for optimum response.

For instance, you slam the pedal to the floor. Instead of opening the throttle body all the way, the computer has an optimized setting to extract the most power from the engine at any given point, and will open the throttle and meter the right amount of gas to give the desired performance. In the entire Nissan and Porsche communities, There hasn't been any complaints about TBW. Now I know there has been complaints about Audi's system, it has some sort of lag or what not, I can't testify to it, but I have heard about it. I just hope GM's system is similar to nissan's and porsche's.
 

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GM introduced DBW in the '97 Corvette and both it and my '02 Envoy and my parents '02 Denali have it. I don't recall ever seeing any complaints about it on the Corvette forums and I certainly don't have any problems with it...you don't even notice it. I expect the Solstice to be just as good since it is a much newer vehicle than any of these.
 

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Now I wish I had more time than I do currently, as this is a topic near and dear to my heart. The automotive company I used to work at made "Drive by wire" pedals, and I was on the engineering team for them at my previous employeer.

The term used in the industry is "Electronic Throttle Control" (ETC). You can not convert a ETC system over to a direct drive (cable driven) system unless you replace the engine and other components. Not worth it.

As far as it "feeling" different. Well, in a car which has both types of pedals, the same specification is in place. So, there should be no difference in feel to the customer. GM has been using them for some time now. Check out most of the truck platforms in GM (and Ford... all the 250 and larger are all ETC pedals). I know GM has ETC in the mini-vans (Montana), as well as the Azteck and Rendezvous (certain engines only).

As far as lag (wrt Ford), that's a built in problem due to their specifications. GM's specifications do not have that same issue. There are only a few companies world wide who make ETC pedals at this point, and one of them is getting out of the business (they happen to make a lot of Nissan's pedals currently).

Adding a ground wire will NOT help anything related to the pedal, and any change that an aftermarket performance chip makes does so only to the fuel/air ratio tables and the like in the ECM / PCM and does not directly affect the pedal (only the computers reaction to the pedal).

Depending on the type of pedal you may or may not be able to change the spring. Why you would want to I'm not sure, as having a direct drive system vs. an ETC system is no different to the end customer in feedback from the pedal system.

Also understand there is no computer in the pedal, simply a resistor of sorts providing feedback on a supply voltage from the vehicle depending on the position of the pedal. There are various ways to to this, but the inputs and outputs are all the same.

Any question you have I'd be glad to address, provided it's not confidential information to any supplier or OEM.
 

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rlhammon said:
As far as lag (wrt Ford), that's a built in problem due to their specifications. GM's specifications do not have that same issue.
Interesting post, thanks. Can you be more specific about this point? I'm curious.
 

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I assume DBW is a accelerator that controls speed electronically instead of opening a throttle?

I HATE sensitive accelerators. My Mercedes really has to be pushed somewhere to go, and I really really like that. I cannot get used to these feather-touch pedals... especially with a clutch to work as well... I hate having to throw the clutch 14 inches, but move the gas less than an inch... it's unnatural.
 

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Fortimir said:
I assume DBW is a accelerator that controls speed electronically instead of opening a throttle?

I HATE sensitive accelerators. My Mercedes really has to be pushed somewhere to go, and I really really like that. I cannot get used to these feather-touch pedals... especially with a clutch to work as well... I hate having to throw the clutch 14 inches, but move the gas less than an inch... it's unnatural.
DBW or TBW, or ETC (Drive by Wire, Throttle by Wire, Electronic Throttle Control), are all the same thing. It still has a throttle body, but instead of a solid cable with a spring, you just have a servo motor on the throttle plate, and the computer will manipulate it depending on your input on the throttle pedal. This setup has many advantages over traditional mechanical linkages, and rely on solid state electronics, so they're pretty much as reliable as a brick.

The sensitivity of the accelerator will be all dependant on how the compnay decides to tune the input/output on the pedal.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Jus2shy said:
DBW or TBW, or ETC (Drive by Wire, Throttle by Wire, Electronic Throttle Control), are all the same thing. It still has a throttle body, but instead of a solid cable with a spring, you just have a servo motor on the throttle plate, and the computer will manipulate it depending on your input on the throttle pedal. This setup has many advantages over traditional mechanical linkages, and rely on solid state electronics, so they're pretty much as reliable as a brick.

The sensitivity of the accelerator will be all dependant on how the compnay decides to tune the input/output on the pedal.

I'm going to pretty much have to deal with it when I get the car. For the time being, I'll just live with it. Like Fortimer said... I simply HATE sensitive gas pedals. And I have this nagging feeling that when we get the car, the shifter will be extremely light, and the gas pedal will be feather light...

It's unnatural. For me, it really isn't an issue of getting used to new technology... I really like to know that there is some resistance there. I'm not about to give up my control of the throttle body to the computer.

My foot should be the one regulating how far it should open... not the computer making the decisions based on what it THINKS I want.

The absolute first thing I'm going to do when I can get the chance, is do all the research possible to see if I can fit a 2.2 throttlebody in place of the 2.4's throttle body. I'll then try to hook up the sensor wiring from the pedal position sensor, to the Throttle Position Sensor on the throttle body. Hopefully.. the ohms and voltage readings are compatible between each other.

:cuss:

Todd,
2006 Pontiac Solstice (On Order)
2002 Ford Crown Victoria LX-P74
1997 Pontiac Grand Am GT (For Sale!)
1987 Pontiac Fiero SE / V6 5-Speed
1987 Pontiac Fiero SE / V6 Auto
1984 Pontiac Fiero 2m4 SE WS6
1981 Pontiac TransAm WS6
1973 Volkswagen Type-2 Transporter (hippie bus)
 

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82-T/A said:
I'm going to pretty much have to deal with it when I get the car. For the time being, I'll just live with it. Like Fortimer said... I simply HATE sensitive gas pedals. And I have this nagging feeling that when we get the car, the shifter will be extremely light, and the gas pedal will be feather light...

It's unnatural. For me, it really isn't an issue of getting used to new technology... I really like to know that there is some resistance there. I'm not about to give up my control of the throttle body to the computer.

My foot should be the one regulating how far it should open... not the computer making the decisions based on what it THINKS I want.

The absolute first thing I'm going to do when I can get the chance, is do all the research possible to see if I can fit a 2.2 throttlebody in place of the 2.4's throttle body. I'll then try to hook up the sensor wiring from the pedal position sensor, to the Throttle Position Sensor on the throttle body. Hopefully.. the ohms and voltage readings are compatible between each other.

:cuss:

Todd,
2006 Pontiac Solstice (On Order)
2002 Ford Crown Victoria LX-P74
1997 Pontiac Grand Am GT (For Sale!)
1987 Pontiac Fiero SE / V6 5-Speed
1987 Pontiac Fiero SE / V6 Auto
1984 Pontiac Fiero 2m4 SE WS6
1981 Pontiac TransAm WS6
1973 Volkswagen Type-2 Transporter (hippie bus)
None of us know what the driving experience will be like yet, but I would like to stress that we should give the car a chance. GM seems committed to avoid any mistakes they have made in the past. I have also seen very few complaints about GM's throttle by wire systems. So I think there is good reason to hope the Sol will be fine, and the throttle by wire will be a plus and not a minus.
 

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82-T/A said:
The absolute first thing I'm going to do when I can get the chance, is do all the research possible to see if I can fit a 2.2 throttlebody in place of the 2.4's throttle body. I'll then try to hook up the sensor wiring from the pedal position sensor, to the Throttle Position Sensor on the throttle body.
Instead of trying to get rid of technology altogether and re-invent the wheel, why not use that technology to get what you want? The response of the throttle is electronically controlled, so why not work on reprogramming it instead? I think it would be a much simpler task and you could probably tweak it to get the throttle control exactly how you like it. Might have to find somebody with the right equipment to work through it with you, but I would think you could get the exact results you're looking for with a lot less trouble. Most "tuners" tend to do the opposite, but I think they could probably make the car more sluggish for you instead. :lol:

Anyway, give the car a chance the way it comes first ... you might just find that you like them thar new-fangled gadgets. :)
 

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I like the potential of DBW, especially if the car came with a switch to put it into "17 year old nephew mode". No, sorry kid, that's as fast as she'll go.... :)
 

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WaitingForBoost said:
Interesting post, thanks. Can you be more specific about this point? I'm curious.
Hmm.. well, thinking with my legal hat on here I might be able to give a bit of an explanation. The two companies have different approaches to the use of ETC pedals on their vehicles. Ford does what's called a "relearn" each time the pedal is stroked. GM does not do this.

Think of the pedal as a voltage regulator (that is basically what it is). It it provided a source voltage, and the pedals position determines an output voltage. The GM specs keep the "zero" point constant in reference to the position of the pedal, and the Ford specs keep the "zero" point constant in reference to incoming voltage. This would mean that the GM pedal needs to return to a specific position in the car in order for the car to be at idle, while the Ford pedal could be at idle anywhere in its stroke, provided that the voltage output is zero. Two different approaches to the same basic end result. Depending on the suppliers design and technology used, each has it's pro's and con's. I can't say that one is better than the other, only they have different approaches. Basic technologies between the two (and all OEM ETC systems) are *very* similar... you can have contact sensors and non-contact sensors for major technology differences, however in principle they are all the same.

Hopefully that gives you part of an answer you are looking for, but realize having read and having access to the OEM specifications I really can't provide details as that would be a violation of agreements with the OEM's. I believe everything I've posted above is general knowledge (at least to those familar with these types of systems), and/or could be found using a voltmeter in any production vehicle... so hopefully nobody from GM or Ford will be upset.
 

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Fortimir said:
I assume DBW is a accelerator that controls speed electronically instead of opening a throttle?

I HATE sensitive accelerators. My Mercedes really has to be pushed somewhere to go, and I really really like that. I cannot get used to these feather-touch pedals... especially with a clutch to work as well... I hate having to throw the clutch 14 inches, but move the gas less than an inch... it's unnatural.
Correct, the linkage to the engine is electric in nature. I believe that all passenger cars from GM carry the same output specifications (voltage wise) and the only difference is "feel" which is provided by springs or friction plates of some sort. The interpetation of the voltage outputs can varry based upon engine control programming though.

If you want to get a feel for what this sort of pedal is like, go test drive a Malibu. It's a passenger car with ETC, maybe that will take away your fears. The only time I've ever been in a car with ETC which felt funny was an early early test build of a pedal we were playing around with in a vehicle it wasn't designed for. That created a little havoc in trying to control the car. Any other vehicle I'd be willing to bet 99% of the driving public wouldn't know it was any difference. I doubt you will either.

What are you all going to do when your car becomes shift by wire (which many US cars are and many more European have been), or better yet steer by wire. Steer by wire has been out in heavy industrial equipment for, heck over 10 years that I'm aware of and I'm sure it's longer than that. Electronic componets are cheaper than the mechanical, weigh less, and can be at least as reliable if not more reliable than the mechancial systems we currently use.
 

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rlhammon said:
Hmm.. well, thinking with my legal hat on here I might be able to give a bit of an explanation.
Well, I'm doing everything with my new Solstice hat on today, but I've got a question anyway. :lol:

Interesting stuff, RLH ... do you know how difficult it would be for somebody to have the accelerator "response curve" reprogrammed if they really didn't like the performance? Is it something a tuner could do with the same type of equipment they use to modify other aspects of performance?
 

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SlySol said:
Well, I'm doing everything with my new Solstice hat on today, but I've got a question anyway. :lol:

Interesting stuff, RLH ... do you know how difficult it would be for somebody to have the accelerator "response curve" reprogrammed if they really didn't like the performance? Is it something a tuner could do with the same type of equipment they use to modify other aspects of performance?
I am not familar with where that information is stored, but from my little knowledge on a few aftermarket chips... I doubt it's anything anyone would even try to touch.

There isn't anything programing is going to do for you though. All that would be able to be done (if even possible, again I don't know where the table is kept or how to access it in a car's onboard system) would be a "shift" in the curve. That said let me provide an example.

Say this is the OEM state of the pedal:

0% of travel = idle
5% of travel = 3% throttle
10% of travel = 12% of throttle
...
50% of travel = 50% of throttle
70% of travel = 100% of throttle

You *might* be able to change the points so that you would get something like this:

0% of travel = idle
5% of travel = 7% of throttle
10% of travel = 15% of throttle
...
50% of travel = 75% of throttle
60% of travel = 100% of throttle

That's going to do anything really for you, at least not performance wise with the vehicle. If there is "lag" then it's going to be *mostly* in the sensor design in the pedal. Let me also state that when I mention "lag" I'm talking milliseconds here, nothing that's perceivable to the driver... however with these electronic systems there is a lot of data sampling, redundency, and error checking that is going on to the extent that you wouldn't even believe.

Nothing in the pedal design affects performace of the vehicle, I don't think people understand that though. All the ETC pedal is doing is making the relationship from where the pedal is in travel to how much fuel is put into the engine.

Think of an older style cable driven pedal. You could swap out the spring (to a lower spring force) on whatever the cable was attached too, but that wouldn't affect the performance of the car. I mean, it's not going to increase it's horsepower or decrease it's 0-60mph time. It's simply going to act like the pedal was depressed 50% of the way when you depressed it 40% of the way.

That's the only sort of change you would be able to make, if it's even possible. However ETC pedals are not new... they've been around for a long time, just not something that was advertised or used heavily in day to day vehicles. I think semi's have had ETC systems for over 10 years... GM and the other OEM's know what they are doing here, and I seriously doubt anyone would be able to tell a true difference betwen an ETC pedal system and a cable driven pedal system.
 
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