How to drive a Mach E in suburban city traffic

lweisenthal

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O.K. I'll make this short.

Most Mach E reviews have to do with stuff like range, 0 - 60, general Mustang-nish, open road, mountains, winter weather, etc etc etc.

This is about taking your kids to soccer practice. Or just driving into work.

Here's the Executive Summary:

You want the drive mode to be "Low." One pedal is a gimmick. Kind of novel. Perhaps useful for some people with a personal issue. But otherwise, just messes with real driving, especially integrating Co-Pilot 360 features with the real world of American suburbia. "Low" is the perfect compromise between freestyle and dominatrix - regenerative braking wise. Your friction brake pads get 90% of the benefit, while you maintain ultimate control. Trust me on this, if you are new to this. Start out with driving in "Low" mode. After awhile, experiment with one pedal, if you are curious, or if you just were born to be a one pedal driver.

Set your adaptive cruise control to "Intelligent" mode. Thereafter, for most driving situations (exceptions would be late for work or going to the Emergency Room), turn on adaptive cruise control and lane centering. What you want to achieve is a state in which you and your Mach-E do a Vulcan mind meld. You don't drive the car. Spock (the MME) doesn't drive itself. It's more like Spock is a 3rd year resident in surgery. She does most of the operation, but you watch her like the proverbial hawk. The two of you make a great team.

What Spock does is most of the actual work. She keeps you in your lane. Adjusts your speed. Maintains proper distance (I suggest going with the "4 Avatar" car distance to begin -- the maximum separation between you and any leading (or cutting into your lane) car. I also suggest just setting the "Intelligent" cruise speed to the exact speed limit of the street on which you are traveling. Later on, if you want to dial it up to speed limit plus 7 or whatever, you can do it. But I advise against it. If you aren't late for work, just chill and listen to some good music or an interesting podcast. You'll arrive at your destination much more relaxed (and with less body odor).

Spock's job will be to keep you centered in your lane and adjust your speed and separation between the vehicle in front of you. Your job is to make sure that Spock doesn't accidentally sever the aorta. Plus you have to do the braking when you approach red lights or stop signs. Then, after you've stopped, you'll usually have to press on the accelerator to give Spock a little wake up call, as well as pressing the "resume" button in the center of your cruise control cluster on the left side of your steering wheel.

I've owned this car now a bit more than a day. Yesterday, I did a 130 mile drive on SoCal freeways. Today, a bunch of suburban driving in a wide variety of typical traffic conditions. Car has, to date, totally blown me away. As I wrote elsewhere, my expectations were sky high, and Spock (Premium trim, RWD, standard battery) has just melted (and melded) my mind. Awesome car. Just awesome.

Pro tip on lane centering: It won't work unless you have adaptive cruise control engaged. Also, when you change lanes, you have to turn your turn signal on in the direction of the lane change. The instant you do that, you control the direction of driving, not Spock. And until you turn the turn signal off, you are 100% in charge, not Spock. So be sure to turn the darn blinker off, once you are in the new lane of travel.

More, I'm sure, as time passes.

- Larry Weisenthal/Huntington Beach

 
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lweisenthal

lweisenthal

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Uh, what?
I've always driven with two feet. Most of my life, with standard ("stick shift") transmissions. With automatics, i accelerate with my right foot, brake with my left. I think that this gives the fastest braking response. Faster than taking a foot off the accelerator and transferring to brake. But other people have always been natural one foot drivers. If that's what you've programmed yourself to do all you life, then you just "might" (but also might not) prefer one pedal driving.
 

Mickey the T

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I never realized that OPD was not universally loved before joining this forum. I've had it in two different BMW i3s and both my wife and I would not drive any other way. In fact, we eliminated any EVs without OPD as contenders for our next vehicle. (VW ID.4, I'm looking at you.)

So it's been interesting to see other viewpoints on this. And nothing wrong with that, of course, I think one of the best things about the MME is that it gives you the option to turn it on and off *and* it has the L button.
 

Murse-In-Airy

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I've always driven with two feet. Most of my life, with standard ("stick shift") transmissions. With automatics, i accelerate with my right foot, brake with my left. I think that this gives the fastest braking response. Faster than taking a foot off the accelerator and transferring to brake. But other people have always been natural one foot drivers. If that's what you've programmed yourself to do all you life, then you just "might" (but also might not) prefer one pedal driving.
I have been driving in one pedal mode for the two weeks I have had the car along with those same cruise control techniques and I find it more natural. I have never used my left foot for anything but the clutch which is how I learned to drive. To each their own. Choices are good.
 

JSW

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I went months without ever touching the Bolt’s brakes, and I’m almost to that point in the MMe. 1PD is the only mode for me.
 

Murse-In-Airy

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acknowledging you have a problem is the first pedal press to recovery.
My wife says I need to edit this to
“TIL I have ANOTHER personal problem.” ?
 

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Yup been driving 1-Pedal for about 3+ years now. Wouldn't go back.

Not a gimmick.

In driver's ed they taught me to only use my right foot. Only use the left foot for the clutch.
 

MurphyDog

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Don't agree with your dismissive 1PD review. It's far from a gimmick. Sounds like you don't want to learn something new. I've been driving cars with 1PD for 8 years now and it's way better than using the old 2PD.
 

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I've always driven with two feet. Most of my life, with standard ("stick shift") transmissions. With automatics, i accelerate with my right foot, brake with my left. I think that this gives the fastest braking response. Faster than taking a foot off the accelerator and transferring to brake. But other people have always been natural one foot drivers. If that's what you've programmed yourself to do all you life, then you just "might" (but also might not) prefer one pedal driving.
I think maybe you should have mentioned you are a left foot brake driver. Most people are used to driving with one foot so your experience and recommendation might be less relevant to the majority of people.
 

mburtsvt

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Hold on everyone.... lets give Larry a few weeks to "get" OPD. It's the future of electric car driving. It's also the most fun since a video game. Trying to guess the distance between cars until OPD will stop the care is an adventure. Always cover the brake!
 

Ma9573

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I'm basically looking to maximize my MPKw. I've seen articles saying that coasting provides more efficiency, and then people in the real world saying they think one pedal is better. With the Bolt and Tesla being one pedal and more efficient than the Mach E I'm not ruling anything out. So I'm doing my first 500 miles in whisper, which is more similar to my Energi, and then will do my second 500 miles in OPD. Whichever wins the MPKw battle will be the one I use going forward. Other than when I have passengers in the car, in which case I'll use whisper unless I get really good at OPD.
 
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lweisenthal

lweisenthal

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Yup been driving 1-Pedal for about 3+ years now. Wouldn't go back.

Not a gimmick.

In driver's ed they taught me to only use my right foot. Only use the left foot for the clutch.
I stand by my recommendation to eschew the one pedal mode for anyone who hasn't previously driven an electric vehicle - particularly if they are trying to master the Copilot 360 features. The "Low" mode provides a very natural, intuitive transition to one pedal. It provides introduction/experience with the use of regenerative braking, without trying to simultaneously attempt to become proficient in both dominatrix regenerative braking and adaptive cruise control and lane assist.

Just begin with driving in "Low," while you become an expert in the nifty drive assist features. One pedal driving is the least useful skill to master. Save it to the end. Then think of it as a cherry on top.

I wish we had the option to generate an instant poll, as is popular on Twitter. How many people brake with the Right foot? How many with the Left? I spent decades of training my right foot to be the accelerator foot and the left to be the auxillary foot. The accelerator foot was constantly engaged with the accelerator. Removing and repositioning it in an emergency wasted precious milliseconds. The left foot was always primed and ready to go. In a stick shift car, I'd have it engaged above the clutch. In an automatic, primed above the brake. To this day, I'm sure I'd do a faster emergency stop with my left foot than my right.

Maybe I'm one in a thousand. I'd be curious to take a survey.

- Larry Weisenthal/Huntington Beach

 
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