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Auto. Nowadays manual are basically like fax machines, getting redundant.
However I'm not a fan of some of these new breed my autos, dual clutch, cvt etc, The car we got for the missus has a dual clutch gearbox and it's a horrible piece of satan blessed sh*t. It's had to be rebuilt by the dealer under warranty. Never touch one of them again.
Manual. However, the new 10-speed automatics coming out have proven to be as good, if not better, than a manual on road courses. The down side is that automatic transmission raises the cost of the car by at least a few thousand dollars, so they're more expensive than their manual trans counterparts.
Paddle shifters are gay.
".45 ACP - because shooting twice is just silly" - JSOP, 2010 - You can never have too much ammo - unless you're swimming, or on fire. - JSOP, 2010 - When you pry the gun from my cold dead hands, be careful - the barrel will be very hot. - JSOP, 2013
My first car, an early 60's hilman I needed to double clutch particularly changing down - didn't know that that car was so far ahead of it's time.
These days all the things that were wrong with automatics (used more gas, needed repair more often, costlier) are no longer true. For ordinary driving particularly commuting (i.e. traffic jams) auto really is better - no longer young so way past the need to drop wheelspins at every traffic light. For driving between cities auto/manual same-o same-o (but consider for very long drives usually cruise control integrates better with auto).
One stage had 15 cars - mostly auto but had one well set up older manual (and well tuned muscle memory to suit) in which I'd beat any auto and most motorbikes off the line for the first km or so without even thinking about it (most fun was leaving idiots in brand new bmw's behind that tried to pass before lanes merged.) But at the time though most favourite when running local was a 50cc scooter (they called "auto" but in fact some sort of clv set up), could park it anywhere, bypass most jams, and it ran for a fortnight on half a gallon of gas. Top speed 50km/h (30 mph) - could do 60 down hill - fast enough on little wheels.
These days all the things that were wrong with automatics (used more gas, needed repair more often, costlier) are no longer true.
While I broadly agree with you, the auto's still need repairs more often than manuals. A manual g/box can easily do 500000km while the auto one has to be opened up to replace the clutch-packs at 250000km-300000km.
The situation is a lot better than it used to be. In the past you'd need to replace clutch packs in an auto every 100000km-140000km, but it's hard to beat the simplicity of the manual g/box design with its external clutch (which gets replaced independently of the g/box).
Hey now.... I have a 74 Nova with a twin-turbo 8.1L big block and a Th400 (3 speed auto) with a manual valve body and B&M Pro ratchet shifter (clicky click). I wouldn't say its for women because it scares the living crap out of my mother-in-law.
I haven't bought an automatic in 25-30 years, and even then, only because we needed bench seats front/back, and that was the only way to get them.
Besides costing less, and keeping you in touch and aware of driving (safety), there's some hidden advantages. Many (perhaps most) people can't drive one. No one wants to borrow your care. If not sporty, but instead, economy, less likely to be stolen.
Time to buy? Near end of model year, the dealer's much more likely to bargain when the vehicle's harder to sell. I bought a new 2012 after the 2013's came out. They knew I was doing them a favor. If I leave, they'll continue to pay interest on the vehicle (to the manufacturer) - and the money borrowed for it could be used for a shiny new car that they could sell - if I buy.
The only time I'd switch to automatic is if I moved to where I'd be frequently caught in extremely bad traffic. On the other hand - if I lived in such a place, I'd take public transport, anyway.
Well, more than anything else, marketing.
Also, as the national ownership of vehicles became nearly universal, the number of those who couldn't/wouldn't learn to drive when it was a standard transmission could now just step on the gas peddle and go.
Like so many things, it's part of the conflicting concepts of something being egalitarian and 'dumbing down'. Elitism vs Competency.
I've never owned one, but my next car probably will be automatic.
You know... nowadays one gets really bored on the road... you go at more than 80km/h and you could be at jail for a couple of years.
If anyone would make a good car that would really drive autonomously I would take that one... Then you could sleep (or whatever you would fancy) while going to work.
So if we must get bored at the road, then at least do it comfortably and avoid doing repetitive tasks at the same time.
So automatic here...
PS: and for the ludites... I saw a Top Gear show in which they stated the McLaren Mercedes SLR was the fastest car they had tried that season and it was automatic... So the real question should not be automatic or manual... the real question is, as almost always, how much money do you have to get a proper car?
I don't think the Android is any more hackable than an iPhone. iPhone users may swear otherwise, but people who've used both feel they are pretty much the same when it comes to stability, security, etc.
Just like the answer to most questions on here, it all depends. Manual transmission is like Assembly language. You have the power and control, but it is more work. That being said, want go off road? Manual. Towing? Manual. My last two Chrysler products have what they called 'AutoStick'. Basically I can manually change the gears if I want to or I can just put it in drive and go. Haven't towed anything or gone off road with 'Autostick' so I can't tell if it is the same or different from a manual.
Jack of all trades, master of none, though often times better than master of one.
It sounds like you are creating an analogy between Android phones and iPhones that parallels a comparison between manual and automatic transmissions. <caveat>I have an Android phone.</caveat>
Android, like a manual transmission, gives you greater choice in how to operate the phone/device. For the performance-minded and those that like to customize their experience, Android would be preferred.
iPhone OTOH, simply works. It does the job and stays out of your way, just like an automatic transmission.
Please note that I'm not a serious phone user. I use it to make calls (imagine that), text and a couple sorts of IM, and Facebook. No games, music, video, etc. Given that, I'm easy to please in the phone market and I'm not terribly discriminating. About my only criteria when I bought the S5 was I wanted Android and I needed a phone that was at least water-resistant, since I carry it when I bike and occasionally when I run.
I love driving and miss the control a manual gearbox give you
Our winter weather is nasty here in Ohio, U.S. From November through March it's an ever-varying parade of rain, sleet, freezing rain, snow of various sorts, and ice. I've never felt safe driving an automatic in those conditions. They never shift when you expect them to and they don't do engine braking worth a damn.
That's why my most recent car purchase was a front-wheel drive Honda Civic with a 5-speed manual transmission.
I like manuals but drive a big pickup truck (gas is cheap in the US and I pull a camp trailer for vacation) and no manual is offered for it. The 8 speed trans is silky smooth though. With a 3.21 rear end and 400hp it really flies in a 50-90 mph pass.
I've always driven manual because it is more fun. Like using VIM. I did preorder a Tesla Model 3. Electric cars have other fun things that will hopefully make up for the lack of a manual transmission in the new vehicle.
I drove automatics for many years while the family was growing up. Now that the kids have flown, I'm back to manual - just for the enjoyment factor. Wife likes it too (though it took some learning there).
Outside of a dog, a book is a man's best friend; inside of a dog, it's too dark to read. -- Groucho Marx
Both of my vehicles have manual. More fun to drive. I feel like manual gives me better control when there's a snowstorm or ice.
If I bought a new vehicle today, though, I'd probably go automatic. Shifting's become tiresome as I get older, and I'm mostly in city traffic any more.
My vehicles are 2002 models, so I haven't looked in a long time. But, it seems like last time I looked, it was actually something I had to order special. I guess automatics have become so reliable and perform so well, there's not really a reason to go manual any more.
That being said, I think having the skill is useful. Never know when you'll be somewhere that you need to drive a stick.