When should you shift gears to get the best acceleration?

I recently bought a sports car and am trying to figure out how to maximize its performance! Is there an ideal moment when I should shift gears for the best acceleration?

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Answer provided by
Annette Maxon
Answered on Apr 28, 2022
Congrats on your new car!
The short answer to your question is that the exact moment to shift gears varies from car to car.
It boils down to two main factors—RPMs and gearing, and no two models have exactly the same torque curves and gear ratios.
Your goal is to have your tires hitting the pavement with as much torque as possible in order to maximize your acceleration.
The best time to shift up is when the torque the car can produce at a higher gear speed exceeds the torque you’re getting at the starting speed.
If you dive deeper into the mathematical equation, you’ll also find that changing gear at maximum power or at maximum torque will not improve your acceleration.
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