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I've noticed when I try to shift from 1st to 2nd, especially when the engine is cold, it won't shift at all, in terms of acting like a normal automatic or manual transmission. Once it warms up though, it's better.
I think that in the manual mode, the predefined ratios are just a suggestion, the computer can override if it's not safe to shift that way.
Occasionally it holds revs while accelerating, the CVT is probably changing ratios, but not holding them like you think they would in manual.
Also, if you're going for example 35mph in 3rd, and you switch to 4th but don't hit the gas the entire time, the CVT ratio won't change until you have your foot on the gas (cvt ratio doesn't change while engine braking)