I hope this isn't a flame or a FAQ but what are the pros and cons of
automatic and manual gearboxes? I've only ever driven manual cars
before. I've just been on holiday and rented a car which was
automatic. I get the impression that Britain is the only county that
drives manual cars; is that true? Why?
I found the automatic a pleasure to drive. The only problem I had was
that if I went up along a motorway slip road I would put my foot down
to accelerate to motorway speed and the gearbox would drop a couple of
gears and rev loudly. I really wanted it to stay in the gear it was in
and accelerate. If I approached a hill I would press the gas to
counter the gradient and the same thing happened. I am used to driving
a sluggish diesel, so perhaps I was heavy footed? Was it my fault or
is this a "feature" of an automatic gearbox to do this?
How should they be driven properly? I wasn't given much instruction!
I have spoken to some people who think they are "something else to go
wrong". Is that true? Are they prone to break? I guess they are
expensive to repair?
What is the life of an auto gearbox? Is it better than a manual
gearbox and clutch? I wonder whether the reverse is true: is a manual
more likely to wear out or fail because it can be driven badly,
whereas does an auto change more smoothly and gently?
I see that autos have a slightly lower fuel economy. Why is that? Is
the gearbox/gear changing not as efficient or is it that the auto
gearbox is much heavier than a manual and weighs the car down?
Finally, is there such a thing as a diesel automatic?
(Thinking of changing my car and weighing up the gearbox options)
- posted 11 years ago