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They are there mainly for the additional S gear selection on steep grades or to help with towing. Best to read your O/M.
 

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You can also use them to down shift while in D...if you're cruising in 6th gear and pull the left hand paddle- it will drop to 5th, do it again and it will drop to 4th...if your RPM's are on the high side it will lock you from dropping into 3rd...but that will only happen if you hovering around the red line, 2nd gear will not engage if you're quite high on the RPM...not till those revs come down.

In S or sport....you ARE controlling the shift points, from a stop,(1st gear) be ready to up shift using the right hand paddle+into 2nd....then 3rd, then 4th and so on....in sport you are the one doing the shifting...In S you also should down shift it as you're coming to a stop, although it does down shift automatically for you, when you stop, it goes to 1st gear again,repeat process....hope this sort of explains it's use.
 
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