Manual Vs. Automatic

Manual Vs. Automatic

  • Manual

    Votes: 16 64.0%
  • Automatic

    Votes: 5 20.0%
  • Semi-Automatic

    Votes: 4 16.0%

  • Total voters
    25

LeVeL

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If you drive in a city, an automatic is the only way to go.
To each his own but I live in a city and both of my cars are manual and I wouldn't even consider an automatic (unless it's a truck or SUV).
 

Perc

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On a side note, I don't acknowledge "semi-automatic" as a real thing. They're all just automatics to me. Which is not a bad thing, just embrace it already people. :p
Yes yes yes. Finally someone that agrees.

I've seen so many discussions of this type where someone chimes in to say "I've got a Golf with an DSG gearbox, but it's really a true manual, because..." ... no, it's not. You put it in D and go. It shifts automatically. That makes it an automatic. Just like a Pontiac from 1979 with three on the tree.

The fact that it has a robotic clutch instead of a torque converter doesn't change anything. It's an automatic.
 
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Merc63

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Yes yes yes. Finally someone that agrees.

I've seen so many discussions of this type where someone chimes in to say "I've got a Golf with an DSG gearbox, but it's really a true manual, because..." ... no, it's not. You put it in D and go. It shifts automatically. That makes it an automatic. Just like a Pontiac from 1979 with three on the tree.

The fact that it has a robotic clutch instead of a torque converter doesn't change anything. It's an automatic.
We're not calling DSGs and Steptronics "manuals." We're calling them "semi automatic" in that part of the time, they are automatic (put it in D and it shifts for you) and part of the time you can select the gear you want and it stays there, like a manual, making the trans "semi automatic." While you don't have to push a third pedal, you do get to have a manual choice mode.
 

Perc

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We're not calling DSGs and Steptronics "manuals." We're calling them "semi automatic" in that part of the time, they are automatic (put it in D and it shifts for you) and part of the time you can select the gear you want and it stays there, like a manual, making the trans "semi automatic." While you don't have to push a third pedal, you do get to have a manual choice mode.
No, I've specifically seen lots of Random People On The Internet? try to convince people that their DSG, SMG or whatnot is manual just because it has a clutch (or two) rather than a torque converter. It's not, guys. It's an automatic. :p

And while I'm at it I would like to give my ?0,02 on whether it's a good thing that a transmission shifts for you even if it's in manual mode. Most people won't agree but do I think it is a good thing.

I had a 2004 Volvo with the usual 5 speed Geartronic. If left in manual mode it wouldn't kick down. It's easy to forget that you're in manual mode for whatever reason. Maybe you preselected third gear to wait for an opportunity to overtake, or maybe you decided to do some cool guy manual shifting on an onramp, whatever. Either way, imagine 10 minutes later when you merge out to overtake, bury the pedal in the floor and... nothing happens for a second or three before you realize you've got the wrong transmission mode selected. By then you might have to abort and hope that the gap you left hasn't disappeared.

This is why I think it very much is A Good Thing? that my current car kicks down even in manual mode.
 

Vette Boss

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My Passat will do the same thing as your Skoda. There is a button at the end of the pedal travel that automatically changes to the lowest possible gear, regardless of mode.
 

TC

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Personally, I consider a "semi-automatic" when it has a manual transmission with an automatic clutch, like the PDK, DCT, etc.
If it has a torque converter, it's an automatic.
But that's me. :lol:
I'd say semi automatic is any automatic, be it clutched auto or torque converter auto, with a full manual mode, where you're still choosing the gear and it hold in that gear when selected. The Steptronic in my E38 is the latter. When you go to the manual mode, it only goes into whatever gear you've selected and it holds it there whether you come to an idle or go WOT. The only difference is you're not pushing a clutch pedal, but youre still manully selecting the gears.
Yup, that's what they say alright. I still don't buy it though. It smells like marketing bs.

They've been selling aftermarket shifters for automatic transmissions for a long time that allow you to manually select and hold gears, but that doesn't change what the transmission is. It's still an automatic, but with a different shifter.

In the end "Manual" and "Automatic" are both very literal names with a very literal meaning. Literally.

It's just funny that people think the small amount of manual effort they put into changing gears means they're not driving an automatic. I mean, even normal old torque converter automatics require the driver to manually shift into D, or R, or L or whatever.
 

Vette Boss

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Well, yeah... Sometimes I want to manually tell the computer in the gearbox what to do. I may not be driving a manual, but I'm brilliant at managing what the computer needs to do.
 

TC

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Well, yeah... Sometimes I want to manually tell the computer in the gearbox what to do. I may not be driving a manual, but I'm brilliant at managing what the computer needs to do.
Just keep in mind, the computer can override you at any time. It has ultimate authority, so you better ask nicely for what gear you want, or you might offend it. :p
 

Vette Boss

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Just keep in mind, the computer can override you at any time. It has ultimate authority, so you better ask nicely for what gear you want, or you might offend it. :p
To hell with the safe spaces and being offensive bullshit. This thing is going to be in exactly the gear I want it to be in. I have my ways. :p
 

prizrak

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To each his own but I live in a city and both of my cars are manual and I wouldn't even consider an automatic (unless it's a truck or SUV).
Pretty much this. Manual is more involved no matter what, you can feel the clutch engage/disengage and you feel when you get into gear. It's also way more satisfying when you get it just right on a downshift or take off. There are times when I go for a drive around my hood just so I can do the whole shifting gears/take off thing.

- - - Updated - - -

We're not calling DSGs and Steptronics "manuals." We're calling them "semi automatic" in that part of the time, they are automatic (put it in D and it shifts for you) and part of the time you can select the gear you want and it stays there, like a manual, making the trans "semi automatic." While you don't have to push a third pedal, you do get to have a manual choice mode.
It's still not a semi-automatic, it's an automatic with ability to select a gear manually. A semi-automatic would be something like the weird Saab with no clutch or a dragster with a ratchet shift aka it needs you to do the shifting just no the clutching.

- - - Updated - - -

Yup, that's what they say alright. I still don't buy it though. It smells like marketing bs.

They've been selling aftermarket shifters for automatic transmissions for a long time that allow you to manually select and hold gears, but that doesn't change what the transmission is. It's still an automatic, but with a different shifter.

In the end "Manual" and "Automatic" are both very literal names with a very literal meaning. Literally.

It's just funny that people think the small amount of manual effort they put into changing gears means they're not driving an automatic. I mean, even normal old torque converter automatics require the driver to manually shift into D, or R, or L or whatever.
Yep 100%, my old Buick had a 4 speed auto with L23D, with L really being 1 so I could "shift" it like a manual and it would even stay in that "gear" came in useful for engine braking on snow.
 

GRtak

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Yes yes yes. Finally someone that agrees.

I've seen so many discussions of this type where someone chimes in to say "I've got a Golf with an DSG gearbox, but it's really a true manual, because..." ... no, it's not. You put it in D and go. It shifts automatically. That makes it an automatic. Just like a Pontiac from 1979 with three on the tree.

The fact that it has a robotic clutch instead of a torque converter doesn't change anything. It's an automatic.

Three on the tree refers to a true manual transmission, it is just shifted from the column instead of the floor. Although, I don't think any Pontiacs had one that late, maybe mid 70s.
 

Perc

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My Passat will do the same thing as your Skoda. There is a button at the end of the pedal travel that automatically changes to the lowest possible gear, regardless of mode.
Yes, it's called the kickdown switch and all automatic cars since the beginning of time have them. :p Mashing the kickdown switch in my V70 didn't do shit if the transmission was in manual, though. Scary stuff.

They're also found in some manual cars, like a Mercedes I drove that had their usual cruise control with a speed limiter mode as well. Aka you set it to limiter mode, tell it where you want the limit to be and it simply won't go faster than that regardless of gear and throttle input. The kickdown switch simply overrides the limiter.

Personally, I consider a "semi-automatic" when it has a manual transmission with an automatic clutch, like the PDK, DCT, etc.
If it has a torque converter, it's an automatic.
But that's me. :lol:
I guess that's ... you. :blink:

:p

I still fail to understand how you can consider my car a "semi-automatic" when I can put it in D and go, like any automatic-equipped car made within the last half century or so. It dosn't matter if it has clutches, a torque converter or unicorns inside to do the power delivery.
 
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Merc63

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I still fail to understand how you can consider my car a "semi-automatic" when I can put it in D and go, like any automatic-equipped car made within the last half century or so. It dosn't matter if it has clutches, a torque converter or unicorns inside to do the power delivery.
Well, that would be the automatic part of "semi" "automatic". Semi automatic does not mean that it's never automatic. It means that sometimes it's more than just "automatic."

No it's never a full manual, but it's no longer acting automatically, either.
 

LeVeL

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Pull a lever and that signals to the computer to perform wizardry and shift gears - that's still fairly automated.
 

prizrak

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Well, that would be the automatic part of "semi" "automatic". Semi automatic does not mean that it's never automatic. It means that sometimes it's more than just "automatic."

No it's never a full manual, but it's no longer acting automatically, either.
See I go by gun terms, a full auto can still shoot single shot but a semi-auto can never shoot more than one shot. Same for transmission, if it can ever shift gears all on its own it's an auto.
 

Perc

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It's still not a semi-automatic, it's an automatic with ability to select a gear manually. A semi-automatic would be something like the weird Saab with no clutch or a dragster with a ratchet shift aka it needs you to do the shifting just no the clutching.
What about the Porsche Sportomatic, then? :p



A manual gearbox with a manually operated gear shift linkage, coupled to a vacuum-operated clutch, coupled to a torque converter, delivering power to the wheels. The clutch was electrically actuated when you grabbed the gear lever.

You only needed the clutch for shifting. The torque converter worked like any torque converter does and made sure you never stalled.
 
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