Article on The Internet Mini Encyclopædia
Here is an explanation: (the figures are made up, but
should be about right)
|Gear||MPH range||MPH gained||Time (s)||mph/sec (effective acceleration)|
Therefore you gain more speed per second OVERALL (not peak or average) in 3rd. The reason behind this is that the actual act of changing gear takes a second or two, and this has more effect on the time in lower gears.
I always find I'm 'mucking around' in 1st and 2nd, but 3rd is the gear where I can really let the car go and watch the speedo rise.
With a longer diff 2nd would be better than 3rd. Depends on your setup.
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