HisMajestyTheKing

Cars (again): automatic or manual gear box?

Automatic or manual?   10 members have voted

  1. 1. Automatic or manual?

    • automatic gearbox
      5
    • manual gearbox
      3
    • other (like Tiptronic, ...)
      2

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31 posts in this topic

I'm used to driving with a stick but sometimes I wish I had an automatic for in those traffic jams. And I always wonder whether an automatic gearbox makes a car more fuel efficient. I know that when I accelerate I kick the gas pedal, go to high rpm en then shift gears...

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I'm used to driving with a stick but sometimes I wish I had an automatic for in those traffic jams.  And I always wonder whether an automatic gearbox makes a car more fuel efficient.  I know that when I accelerate I kick the gas pedal, go to high rpm en then shift gears...

213357[/snapback]

Since i do want to drive with a gear stick anymore, i voted for automatic. I drive automatic since the past 2 years.

Anyway King, automatic consumes more, around 1 liter per 100 km, give or take. But your airco consumes also.

If fuel efficiency is what you are after, then Audi (amongst others) is the way to go.

François

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I know rated consumption is better for a manual but I wonder how they come to that number. I assume that for many people - like me I guess - an automatic would be more efficient because it shifts gears when it needs to. Me, I push my diesel to 4000 - 4500 rpm which cannot be very fuel efficient. I hate shifting gears on highways and main roads. It's fun on smaller roads with lots of turns like hill country and mountains.

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BTW francois, what car do you drive? About the only Audi I'd ever consider is an A6 station wagon as the only other station wagon, an A4, is just way too small for what it costs. Like mosts cars from the VW group these days.

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Automatics may keep you in the most efficient gear, but they do so by utilizing torque converters and slippage, which results in some mechanical loss (AFAIK) leading to the lower mpg figures.

Perhaps most efficient are the newer Continuously Variable Transmissions, which use mechanisms like two mating cones to transfer power (I remember a figure I saw a long time ago, so that may have been an early version). However, the CVTs don't handle too much horsepower or torque, probably due to the fact that they rely upon friction between two non-flat surfaces...

Future Shock

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The older 'dual cone' CVTs aren't the greatest at transmitting torque, but horsepower isn't a problem. (If you slowly ramp them up, they can transmite quite a lot of power, but high torque tends to induce slippage.)

As for me? I've got a 'planetary' CVT. The most efficient 'transmission' possible. (Not to mention it's ultra-light weight.) Where is this miracle gearbox? Toyota Prius. The only problem is that it doesn't have a 'reverse' gear. There is no possible way for the gas engine to make the wheels go backwards. So how do you go backwards? The electric motor. By holding the gas engine still, running the electric motor backward transmits the reverse rotation to the wheels. (It also means that if you ever drain your battery 100%, you can't go in reverse! Luckily, it won't let you do that.)

Here's a great page that shows how it works.

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ehurtley,

That was an amazing article, thanks for pointing it out. I always suspected that the Prius had some miraculous engineering under the hood, and you have proven it.

It's not simply a bank of batteries and an electric motor helping along an underpowered go kart - it's got amazing tech under there. the computer control code alone must be rather impressive - to model all of the torque/horsepower/speed conversions, and figure out how much to where under what load.

You can see that degree of sophistication in the apparent cultish behavoir of it's owners, with the discussion groups, web sites, etc. I'm saying this is a good thing, btw, not to ridicule.

Too bad that I can't have one...and just ordered the complete opposite... :-(

Future Shock

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ehurtley,

That was an amazing article, thanks for pointing it out.  I always suspected that the Prius had some miraculous engineering under the hood, and you have proven it.

It's not simply a bank of batteries and an electric motor helping along an underpowered go kart - it's got amazing tech under there.  the computer control code alone must be rather impressive - to model all of the torque/horsepower/speed conversions, and figure out how much to where under what load. 

You can see that degree of sophistication in the apparent cultish behavoir of it's owners, with the discussion groups, web sites, etc.  I'm saying this is a good thing, btw, not to ridicule.

Too bad that I can't have one...and just ordered the complete opposite...  :-(

Future Shock

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Well I see FS is rather uninformed about auto high tech, just as he is with politics/economic issues ;). The Prius has a ton of more high tech gear in it. I believe an brief over view from front to back of the car was done in an issue of Popular Science, IIRC.

But still, Prius owners maybe cultish, but that doesn't necessarily make them sophisticated anymore than 'other' cults require ;) 'Jonestown' , Branch Dividian(sp?) Waco, Texas, space cadets in N. San Diego County, etc.

Why FS you don't have to order the complete opposite, and in fact if you save up your pennies (lol, like you could wait to buy a better monitor/big screen TV ;-) ) in about 2yrs you can buy a Cheyenne hybrid, woohoo! No, mamby-pamby oddball Japanese eccentricities, just pure German eccentricities/style of the Porsche SUV type, lol.

But do take a look at the links in my 250MPG thread FS, read the links. And here I thought you were into doing hacks to computers and the like, should be right up your Linux alley then?

I am hopping in the future they make these vehicles less 'miraculous' with less severe complexity. Starting with newer, higher performance batteries (ya, read the links... I think I'll add few more links just to put this 'amazing' and costly tech into 'perspective'). Just more things to go wrong, getting to be like the Space Shuttle where you need 3 or 4 redundant backup systems :(

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udaman,

In terms of being uninformed, I would guess that the number of SR readers that knew that the preceeding versions of CVTs used dual cones to be somewhat less than 50%. And as usual, you fail to notice sarcasm in anyone other than yourself (or did you really think that I assumed it was a "go kart"?)...

And for being "forced to order", well, when working off a restricted list (Ford and Mercs only) of endorsed vehicles and looking for the ones that have the best re-sale value at the end of the lease, my options were indeed limited...but I intend to enjoy the heck out of what I am getting...pics at sometime in the future, so to speak...

FS

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I'm used to driving with a stick but sometimes I wish I had an automatic for in those traffic jams.  And I always wonder whether an automatic gearbox makes a car more fuel efficient.  I know that when I accelerate I kick the gas pedal, go to high rpm en then shift gears...

213357[/snapback]

I'm sorry; I guess I didn't quite understand what the question was, or what you are getting at?

Does it have anything to do with being a conscientious environmentalist? Or just what I would prefer today?

Ok, lacking any guidance, being a somewhat SR#233 type of question (car thread): I will say, if I'm good and take public transportation some of time, but I'm a billionaire like Steve-O Jobs, so I have my own Gulfstream V, with transcontinental range. Alright, then I choose the weekend 'harem' of '64 Ferrari GTO, manual only tranny... cause it's the damn sexiest, curvy hot red head in existence. Right next to her in the stable... ahem, weekend 'harem' we need some more 'modern' red hot fire.

One of only 399 'Enzo's F1 clutchless paddle shifters. Sorry about the blurry pic, I was stuck in stop N go traffic when I shot this with one hand... kind of like the typical LA driver who's busy talking relentlessly on their cell phone with one arm up against their head.

Enzo-flatbed-lg.jpg

But because the Enzo doesn't do 'top down', the F430 Spider in red, red jumpsuit hottie model standing next to it, included of course :) Umm, have I mentioned before... the Italians do it con brio ? That a Ferrari, is a Ferrari, is a Ferrari?

2005 Shanghai Auto Show

202932763262460.jpg

http://www.edmunds.com/insideline/do/Drive...rticleId=106859

" Problem is, when you "blast" up to 50 mph in a Ferrari F430 Spider it's almost as heart-stopping, and attention-grabbing, as a shuttle launch. The V8's 483 horsepower creates a shrieking exhaust wail that could be considered highly offensive — if it wasn't so damn melodic. At least, we found it melodic. Officer Tulley probably found it highly intrusive and belligerent on this otherwise placid roadway. But that doesn't make it illegal, right? It would seem so, as he let us off with a warning, plus a wave and a smile.

The officer's reaction was not uncommon during our too brief time in Maranello's latest creation. Everywhere we took the F430 we got smiles, waves and thumbs up. But the most unexpected response came on the curly canyon roads when encountering slower traffic.

People pulled off to the side of the road to let us by!

Depending on where you live this might not seem worthy of mention. But trust us when we tell you that California drivers aren't particularly known for "yielding to faster traffic" — unless, apparently, the faster traffic is blood red, emits a siren song and has two bumper-mounted air intakes that could each swallow a fully grown Saint Bernard. "

The phat lady sings?

"You would think, given the Ferrari F430 Spider's unearthly good looks — its sheet metal like a fierce, turbulent flow of molten lipstick — that the car would primarily be a visual experience. And yet, as I sit here reflecting on my week in this car, my brain trembling with San Andreas-like aftershocks and my hair fully locked in the horizontal position, what I remember most is its sound — or sounds. This thing has more voices than Linda Blair in full antichrist mode."

"This is not a car for the bashful. The F430 Spider is exactly as loud as four Italian sport bikes glued together, which is to say loud enough to set off jewelry-store burglar alarms and register on governmental homeland security monitors. At part-throttle, the car tries to restrain itself — it sounds a lot like a trombone played with the mute in. But as soon as the needle on the big yellow tach sweeps past 4,000 rpm, an air-metering drum rotates between the dual air plenums, and then, oh boy. This is the motorized diphthong from hell. BaaaaWHAAAAHHHH!"

"To double-downshift this car in a tiled tunnel is to experience utter automotive satori. The whopping, snapping overrun sounds made me choke back tears of joy. I know. I'm not well, really. If you want to help, please donate $205,000 to the Dan Neil Ferrari Fund. With research, there is hope.

The product of what is purely the most sophisticated piece of reciprocating machinery on the road, this sound is dark and primitive and triggers fight-or-flight bells in those who hear it. Tease the 8,500-rpm redline and for blocks around alfresco diners raise their heads in unison, like African meerkats around a watering hole when one picks up the scent of hyena.

And that's just around town. With an empty on-ramp and a clear shot at the freeway, nail the throttle and the sound you get is like pulling Odin's beard — an unhinged, stressed-metal rage and hurricane howl of the induction pounding down air. The car rockets from 0 to 100 mph in less than 9 seconds. Keep your boot in it and crack off four 150-millisecond upshifts with the car's F1-style paddle shifters. Just try.

In jail, no one can hear you scream."

Child-like '36k' would probably pee in his pants under such excitement!

Audi TT 3.2 with DSG tranny. Still all these new high tech trannies that are computer controlled, need some further refinement before then can do it like a true Ferrari F1 race car. Then again, the rumored Audi SUV derivative of the VW Toureg/Porsche Cheyenne dubbed the O7, might become a QS7 model with 500hp, not that HTMK could use all that power ;-)

http://auto.consumerguide.com/auto/new/rev.../id/38063/'

BTW FS, Subaru had a CVT on the lowest priced AWD car in America with the discontinued 'Justy' model in the 1990's. Well if you want to be trendy like Dustin Hoffman or actress Holly Hunter, you get a Lexus 400h, quite a bit more horsepower than the Prius, with a CVT and hybrid system derived from the Prius engineering research.

http://www.edmunds.com/insideline/do/Drive...rticleId=106271

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LOL I can see ever so responsible 12K9 ‘overgrowin’ knee jerking to some hip-hop 10 mpg streaking down the I-10, after all that is a ‘puff’ emanating out of burgundy with tan interior mid size, man 12K9 betcha that badboy speed machine cost you eh couple arms of your vast wealth, hehe Job O style, sedan eh, so this is Gates drives old grey Taurus is equal to 12K9 drives Job O style / xxx millions Job O style hood, sure I believe you 12K9, like we all do, slight chuckle, sticking his head out the window with crapamera in one hand ‘overgrowin’ in the other, eyes off of road, that’s for sure better then cell phone eh, hehe he is responsible eh, taking pictures of, omg I want it nutter ride on flatbed, wow if only I was so simple, hehe after all turns out 12K9 is a chest beating, omg I want the nutter ride, grab the Asian cutie, drag her into the cave by the hair, chauvinist pig waaaa feelings femi nazi Cindyian eh. Geesh 12K9 seems you always fall to the wrong end of the old saying, “Rectify the plank in your own eye before picking on your neighbors splinter†yeah well something to that effect, right 12K9, hehe oh yeah forgot in his ‘overgrowin’ ‘good stock’ ‘please them’ state of mind he is ever so perfect, or ‘do he’ realize after all he fails to respond to my questions in attempts to elucidate, chuckle, I just can’t believe it’s not ‘cannabutter’ what 15 minute attention span state are you in 12K9, I can help.

avatar69257926my.gif

12K9 seems to be pissing his pants over this, omg I wish I had it story, in his wildest wet dreams he gets to ride in said automobile ‘overgrowin’ hydro the whole way with señoras from his pictures, you know, the 12K9 wish I had a girlfriend obsessive Asian cutie pictures. I still may send them to feminist website and attach 12K9 e-mail, perhaps they can explain the ‘real’ problems woman face from a woman point of view, well at least tear him limb from limb, you know not from obsessive pervert 12K9.

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BTW francois, what car do you drive?  About the only Audi I'd ever consider is an A6 station wagon as the only other station wagon, an A4, is just way too small for what it costs.  Like mosts cars from the VW group these days.

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A Mercedes 270 ML with 5-gear automatic.

Well it seems the automatic gear uses power and that would be why consumption is higher. I saw this on Belgium TV when at a certain time, they wanted:

- 4-wheel drivers (SUV, Jeeps you get the picture) out of the city, like in London which is ridiculous of course.

- they wanted to ban automatic gears because of the (slightly) higher consumption which is also ridiculous of course. They prefer everybody to get a heartattack because one looses hours in traffic, meanwhile having to shift gear hundreds of time.

- they even said 4x4 cars where NOT safe. Hahaha, well those cars are safer because thanks to the 4x4 you do not "slip" easily.

- they do not want 4x4 because those drivers are sitting higher, have a better view. Also ridiculous, what about vans. They sit higher too.

But hé, give me one example in favor of our Belgian government. All i see is incompetence.....whatever i guess.

François

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the rumored Audi SUV derivative of the VW Toureg/Porsche Cheyenne dubbed the O7, might become a QS7 model with 500hp, not that HTMK could use all that power ;-)

Hmmm. One detail. I don't need all that power unlike the majority of SUV drivers that need several hundred hp to feel a real man :D

As to the topic, it's just for curiosity's sake. Fuel efficiency doesn't seem to vary that much between a manual and an automatic but an automatic seems so easy. Too bad automatics often cost between €1200 and €2500 more than an equivalent manual and typically they're not available on all versions of a given series. Usually only with the more powerful engines.

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Wow look at that HTMK doesn’t need all that chest beating mans man power like 12K9 needs to make up for lack of something, not sure what it is, lack of girlfriend, or just compensating for is it cold in here? :)

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I wouldn't mind streets and highways without all those bloody SUV's. The typical driver of one of those thinks he/she owns the road and simply has to break the speedlimit by at least 20 km/h. And those are the slow ones. Good thing there won't be easy tax breaks for cars like that anymore.

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I wouldn't mind streets and highways without all those bloody SUV's.  The typical driver of one of those thinks he/she owns the road and simply has to break the speedlimit by at least 20 km/h.  And those are the slow ones.  Good thing there won't be easy tax breaks for cars like that anymore.

213531[/snapback]

Now that's funny - I just ordered an SUV as an excuse to go slower and surer...

The young man in me wanted a Mazda RX-8 off my car list - the older man in me knew that it was just a matter of time before I did something with it my aging reflexes couldn't back up. Hence an underpowered, slow and even fuel efficient SUV...yes, with a six-speed manual, of course...

FS

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Sounds nice FS, only thing, is there such a thing as a fuel efficient SUV, :) what kind of mpg that Rover going to get?

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Sounds nice FS, only thing, is there such a thing as a fuel efficient SUV,  :)  what kind of mpg that Rover going to get?

213543[/snapback]

It's tested at nearly 40 mpg hiway, and 30 mpg mixed city/hiway. Slow acceleration, obviously, 0-60 in 11.2 seconds when pushed hard, but your average delivery truck seems to get around quite well, and they only do 0-60 in 15+ seconds.

I'm using a company-provided midsized sedan right now that doesn't get 30mpg on gasoline...and has a trip-computer on the dash to monitor that sorry state of affairs.

FS

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Wow sounds impressive for a SUV, looking forward to see if it lives up to those numbers in your real world tests. :)

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"Hmmm. One detail. I don't need all that power unlike the majority of SUV drivers that need several hundred hp to feel a real man "

No King, my 4x4 weighs 2300 kg or some 5500 pounds. So yes, one needs more power because of the heavy weight of the car. One can load 800 kg in it (some 1800 pounds), so if you need to go drive in the mountains, yes, you need power.

By the way King, to feel like a man, one needs "power" between the legs :P

hihihihi,

François

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I don't need a car to feel power :P

You're right that a big car like that needs a more powerful engine but often those SUV's have very powerful engines. Too powerful to justify for most drivers. I doubt many drive offroad or tow heavy cargo's. Sure, if you want to drive your boat from home to the sea I can understand why a powerful engine isn't a luxury. But how many people driving SUV's need them?

BTW if I were ever to buy a 4x4 I'd buy a real one - not some wannabe - I'd buy me a Land Rover Defender. Or perhaps a Discovery or a Range Rover. Maybe a Toyota Land Cruiser or Mercedes G. Offroaders, not softroaders.

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"By the way King, to feel like a man, one needs "power" between the legs "

You misted this one King. You do not need a car to feel power between the legs...... :rolleyes:

François

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"BTW if I were ever to buy a 4x4 I'd buy a real one - not some wannabe - I'd buy me a Land Rover Defender. Or perhaps a Discovery or a Range Rover. Maybe a Toyota Land Cruiser or Mercedes G. Offroaders, not softroaders. "

Those cars are slower then a turtle. Besides if never going off road, this is definitly the wrong choice.

And no, it is only in the states that those SUV's have "too" much power.

Those wannabee cars are safer and better then you think. You should read my entire posting.

I CAN PUT 800 KG IN MY ML270 AND DRIVE WITHOUT FEELING THE EXTRA WEIGHT.

Show me a Opel that can load that much and i do not mean a van.

François

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Those cars are slower then a turtle. Besides if never going off road, this is definitly the wrong choice.

Aha. Exhibit number one that SUV drivers are reckless speeders ;) "my car has to go FAST"

Those wannabee cars are safer and better then you think.

Did I mention anything about their safety? The biggest danger in cars like that tends to be the driver. Wit wannabe I meant that they're supposedly suited for offroad driving while they're not.

I CAN PUT 800 KG IN MY ML270 AND DRIVE WITHOUT FEELING THE EXTRA WEIGHT.

Exhibit number two! Car needs to be fast even with considerable cargo. Driving fast while heavily loaded is DANGEROUS. Believe me, I have used my old/wreck/Foert Mondeo to transport stones - enough that I was driving on the axles. Didn't break worth a damn. Better brakes would of course help but physics will always mean that the heavier a vehicle is loaded, the longer it takes to stop. And you want to drive fast with that kind of cargo...

Show me a Opel that can load that much and i do not mean a van.

Unlike many SUV owners I don't pretend that I ever need to load that much. Not saying that you are one of them but most are like that.

Do you hate Opel? i'd be perfectly happy with a Toyota Avensis as well. Nice car :)

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