2009 Nissan 370Z: SynchroRev Match Making Things Too Easy?
February 23, 2009
Ever since I learned to drive stick I've been trying to figure out how to master the heel-toe downshift. I've practiced on every manual-shift car I get in, have asked many an editor to teach me and even got Edmunds Senior Automotive Editor Brent Romans to make a video running through the steps. But I can NEVER get it. When to blip? When to brake? When to move my foot off the clutch? Is my foot too small? I know, I overthink things.
But then we got the 2009 Nissan 370Z Touring in our fleet. Another editor suggested I give it a go since it has the very nifty SynchroRev Match feature that blips the throttle for you when you downshift. "You'll be able to hear when you should get the revs up," he said.
So lucky me had the Z this weekend. It's much easier to manage than our old Z which felt like its clutch pedal was a foot off the floor. In any case, sure enough when I downshift, the car automatically blips the throttle for me, making for a smooth transition to a lower gear. Neat! At first I loved it. I felt like a superhero racecar driver...but then I realized that since it does the job for me, I can never practice and can therefore never master that elusive skill.
Sure, there's an off button for SynchroRev Match but 1) with that technology readily available, will the Average Joe still be willing to suffer through the annoyingly awkward stages of the learning process to master the heel-toe downshift? And 2) where is the off button?
Caroline Pardilla, Deputy Managing Editor @ 1,757 miles