Since it is an old post, but came up I agree with the last post (about snowy conditions etc), but the "it doesn't do anything" part, well, if you had a manual trans and floored it in fifth gear it wouldn't downshift for you know would it? Defeats the purpose of "manual" control.Also on my last car, when in "manual" mode, if you floored it, it would auto downshift for you if you didn't do it manualy. On the Compass if your in 6th gear and floor it... it dosn't do anything.
First of all break linings are cheap. The CVT seems to have a natural drag when off the accelerator as it is especially when its not been driven very long but coasts a bit better after its hot I gather. But its no where near the coasting characteristics of a typical automatic. The band may wear or cause overheating of the fluid especially if the Compass is not equipped with the cooler option.I do the same as Compass as it saves a lot on the breaks