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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I recently bought a 2005 4X4 Frontier. I love the truck, gets good mileage, powerful. One thin I noticed right away is that when cruising on cruse control and I begin going down a slight downgrade I'll feel the truck begin to surge. I look down at the tachometer and see the RPM's bumping from almost idle to 1800 RPM repeatedly. The only way to make it stop is to kick it out of cruise control and manually operate the throttle.

I commute to work where, when I go home, I have to go down a 13%, very curvy grade for about 2 miles. At the top of the hill, to avoid riding the brakes all the way down, I put the truck in 1st and use engine braking down that hill. Every so often the truck will go into free wheel mode on the way down the hill.

These symptoms seen to me to be a problem in the torque converter circuit or programming.

Does or has anyone had the same symptoms with their Frontiers?

Thanks,

Larry:)
 

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My manual does the same thing. Seems to me that the cruise is just super sensitive and keeping the truck up to the set speed because the grade isn't steep enough to keep up on its own.
 

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The only thing I can figure out why it does this is SLACK in the drivetrain, bad u-joins, a sloppy rear differential, etc... mine does this too on certain down hills, it's not terrible but its a little annoying. Other than that being the cause, it's just a terribly programmed cruise control system, I've only ever experienced that in my frontier. This truck's got a lot of quirks compared to my last two vehicles but its been good going strong :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Called the dealer yesterday. They said the surging is not right and to bring it in for inspection. Now I know why i got the extended warranty when i bought the truck.

Larry:)
 

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Let us know if they find anything Larry. As scurvydog wrote, most of us have noticed this and on a 13% downgrade, I imagine that the surging would be extreme. I think the system is programmed to maintain the set speed, but the computer has no way of knowing how long a downgrade is, so keeps blipping the gas as it tries to do its duty.

I'm not a big fan of cruise control on any vehicle, as traffic often interferes with attempts to maintain an even speed, plus I feel my control is sacrificed without my feet being able to quickly react. My wife uses cruise on her car and it drives me nuts as she must reset it every few minutes as traffic slows.
 

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the surging you are feeling is the the engine going from no throttle to part throttle. the tip in on the throttle is a little overzealous imo. this is normal. imagine if you will that you didn't have CC on and you were cruising down the same hill. you would let off the gas because you would be gaining speed which you would feel, then the hill isn't quite enough down hill to maintain your speed with the engine braking because you are still in gear so it begins to slow down a bit. after it reaches a certain point the CC kicks the throttle back in. it doesn't know you are going down hill so it kicks in with (lets say for instance) 10% throttle and you quickly gain the speed back so it goes back to no throttle. this is the "surging" you are feeling. this should only happen going downhill
 

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Mine will do the same thing. I did notice last night going home that with the AC off it wasn't as bad to surge. What's up with that?
 

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Mine will do the same thing. I did notice last night going home that with the AC off it wasn't as bad to surge. What's up with that?
whenever the A/C compressor is turned on the engine has to up the power a tad to compensate so it has to give more throttle at that "tip in" point. this exaggerates the surging feeling even more. this is still normal
 
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