In north america, sport mode typically sets the electronic control unit (ecu) to a more narrow power band. sport mode can also be programmed to give the vehicle variable levels of electronic throttle response – often by progressively closing off individual fuel injectors.
in european markets, sport mode is used on cars with manual transmissions to give opportunity for a higher rpm at lower speed opportunity and assist in ‘gearing down’ at high speeds or while traveling up steep inclines.
is sport mode bad for a car?
sport mode decreases torque during acceleration, resulting in worse fuel economy.
to get the maximum power from your engine, you need to raise the rpms to their peak which usually happens at higher speeds. this means that in sport mode it is more difficult for your car to accelerate at lower speeds. as a result it uses more gas when accelerating.
otherwise, whether or not sport mode is bad for your car depends on how often you drive in this manner and what type of gas mileage you are typically getting when driving around town vs on the highway. if you are able to average better mpg when cruising only on the highway without having any extra power complications then maybe sport mode isn't bad for your car at all!
when should i use sport mode in my car?
sport mode should typically be used when driving conditions call for it. for example, when driving on unpaved surfaces, ground loops in snow or dirt roadways, and low-grip situations such as snow packed areas and curvy mountain roads.
sport mode will generally help the car drive through these situation more easily by suppressing understeer and reducing torque steer. in instances where sport mode is not needed (such as highway driving), the engine power will have decreased emissions because of reduced idling time. putting your car into sport mode also helps to warm up your engine faster!
what happens when you put a car in sport mode?
when the car is in sport mode, you'll notice that the responses are more precise than normal acceleration. this is because sport modification gives power to the engine more quickly, so you get an immediate response when accelerating. you may also notice increased engine noise at higher speeds. if you want to put your car in to full sport mode, just press and hold down the gas pedal until it says ‘sport' on your dashboard display.