Automatic or Manual?

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I am just about to get a car. Probably a Honda Civic. I want to just, ya know add some rims, a spoiler, a body kit, mainly outside exterior things but maybe a little on the engine, and probably more on the engine as I get older. Do you think that there is a difference in having an automatic or a manual. Not as in the driving experience, because that's a pretty obvious difference. But, just as in what people will think. I'm thinking that people will be like, 'Nice car! Oh, man you've got an automatic? You should have a manual man.'. That's what I'm thinkin' the basic response will be... But I want people to like my car and think it's cool and I think that manual helps. Well, thats all so tell me what you think please. Does a manual seem cooler than an automatic? Thanks.

posted by  SilverCivicSi98

yeah, id get a manual, dont even bother with an auto when it comes to the "rice" scene... if you will... plus using a stick, i think, is a lot more fun

posted by  mazda6man

I agree completely with mazda6man.

posted by  Smoke

SilverCivicSi98: It is my opinion that prior to clicking submit to your post, you knew the answer and you knew what you wanted to buy and why.

Now just go and do it. :thumbs:

posted by  BavarianWheels

if your into honda you should look for a 93 - 98 civic hatchback.5spd... drop a B16a2, get a decent Greddy turbo, exhaust, intake, and leave it like that... maybe a body kit, some neon if u like that sorta stuff... that'd give you a decent car.... you could have all that for about 5000-6000 ( 3k for the car and 3k for the mods). depends on if u wanna b in the racin scene or the show scene...... If you have no clue wat im talking about mah bad... im asuming you know about cars :laughing:

posted by  jzxTT

I think it's safe to say from the tone of your post that you're more concerned with what other people think of you and "looking dope" than anything else. Why do you give a damn what they think, unless your just a wimpy little insecure weenie? Drive what you want to drive and ignore everyone else.

Lastly, I'm willing to bet from the way you sound that you have NO idea how to drive a stick. The only thing that makes you look like more of a wuss than driving an automatic is driving a manual and screwing it up.

posted by  vwhobo

Manual. Clutches forever.

posted by  DodgeRida67

holy crap dodgerida67
that sig needs to be MUCH smaller
be considerate

stick is better than auto
and even if you don't know how to drive stick, you gotta start somewhere

posted by  asa67_stang

Fix your sig.

posted by  BavarianWheels

didnt mean to sound like a smart ass but thats not a question you should ask other people..who cares how "cool" people will think u r ... :thumbs: stick or auto? ... chances are you dont know how to drive stick but trust me its waaay worth learning... sorta like going from a tricycle to a normal bike ... looks hard but isnt and a lot more fun :thumbs: :2cents:

posted by  jzxTT

You cant beat manual transmission (unless your in you 70's lol), not only do you get more of a feel for the car but you shift when YOU want to and not when the transmission decides it's right! plus if you ever get RWD manual It's a lot more fun!

posted by  Cliffy

OK. My brother has a manual on his '94 accord and he says hed much rather have an auto, but considering that accord has 200,000 miles and a lot of crap on it doesn't work, maybe theres just something wrong with his that makes it hard for him. But, anyway, I think, based on what you guys say about manual being fun, I guess I'll go with a manual. Besides, finding a manual Civic is easier than finding an automatic one.

posted by  SilverCivicSi98

siwwy people Although manuals are nice provide better fuel economy and are more fun over all. automatics provide easier driving less trouble and you'll notice that once the big dogs start bushing BIG high horsepower numbers they are running automatics. Automatics are quicker and more precise and not to mention a hell of a lot stronger.

posted by  Arthur

If you know how to drive manual it can be a lot of fun. I, myself, am still learning in my GTZ. I sometimes (first gear and reverse when I'm just starting to take off) wish it was an automatic (because those gears are hardest for me right now. All the rest is butter).

posted by  Satty101

Please oh great guru of transmissions, please cite some examples.

posted by  vwhobo

ok i think its time to contribute my :2cents: to this discussion...

i feel that whether to go manual or not really depends on what kind of driving you are doing where. if you live and work in the country, where there is very little to no traffic then a manual might be more suitable. however, for those of you who work in, say, New York City, and live on Long Island, a manual would be pure hell in the traffic, and therefore an automatic would be better.

and then theres the people who dont know how to drive a manual (my uncle..). of course they really aren't car enthusiasts IMO :laughing:

of course this is all based on my still learning the basics of driving on my moms '02 Odyssey. (real pimpin, eh? :orglaugh: ). so Satty you are leaps and bounds ahead of me.

posted by  SuperJew

This is my opinion. I generally agree with everything SJ says.

These are facts. I personally have no use for automatic transmissions in my own vehicles. In my entire personal fleet I have exactly two automatics. One is my '73 Satellite which is just a cool old cruiser, the other is in my wife's horse pulling trailer. I wouldn't care if I lived in downtown Mexico City, I just prefer a stick.

posted by  vwhobo

Now THAT IS a rough place to drive!! (and breathe)

posted by  BavarianWheels

SilverCivicSi98's question was pretty stright forward.

However jzxTT's reply was pretty much garbage...


posted by  snoopewite

Well, is it possible to change your car from an automatic to a manual or the other way around? If, so, I'm guessing that its a hella lot and is a major inconvience.

posted by  SilverCivicSi98

That would be a yes and a yes.

posted by  vwhobo

They are easier untill they go wrong and you have to pay for a new box...An ex-collegue of mine (notice the context!) put a pump up stand through an auto box on a '98 Ford Mondeo and it cost him nearly £1300 for a new one! So I guess that means they're not very strong either....and they are certainly not very quick :banghead:

posted by  Cliffy

Arthur, you've been asked to cite some examples concerning a statement you made. Please don't ignore your civic duties.

posted by  vwhobo

:laughing: :laughing: :laughing: :laughing: :screwy:

posted by  jzxTT

OK... I would just like to say that in The Fast and The Furious (I know I shouldn't be going off movies but...)they all have manuals. And they aren't goin' slow, even though the speed is a little exaggerated. And I'm sure thats what most racers have.

posted by  SilverCivicSi98

The difference in speed is sooo minimal it's practically non-existant and anyway, I aint never heard of an auto that's faster than it's manual equivilant...Manuals provide far better accelaration though which is always nice! :banghead:

posted by  Cliffy

... If what your are looking for is a "fast" car and u want ( for some reason) to be like paul walker and Vin desil get a *stick*:driving:... i garauntee you soooner or later your gonna wanna drive one so start now... but a word of advice... get an old piece of shit to learn in then once u master the stick in that car stick will be a piece of cake :thumbs:

posted by  jzxTT

Didn't you mean to say "get a stick"?

posted by  snoopewite

oops... :mrgreen: .. problem fixed.. :laughing:

posted by  jzxTT

Just because i dont sit at a computer all day and post non stop doesnt mean im ignoring something, i have a life and post here rarely. The only reason i say that automatics are faster is because they are Way more precise and are alot stronger and i was under the assumption that top fuel dragsters used an automatic style transmission. Besides Ive seen people shave time off there run by switching to an automatic, I believe it was in a high horsepower eclipse/talon. You really need to lose the attitude VW, your not better than us so quit pretending like you are, yes you may be knowledgble when it comes to auto mechanics but it in no Way gives you the right to treat others like garbage. Either straigthen up or shut up asshole.

posted by  Arthur

Why the hostility, because you're wrong and not man enough to admit it?

You made a statement. I wanted clarification. You made an assumption and as normally happens, made an ass out of yourself. The sad thing is that you didn't even make an ass of yourself by making the statement, anyone can make a mistake. What hurt you is all the BS leading up to saying you made a mistake.

As for having a life, it's been my experience that the people who use that phrase are the ones least likely to have one. So while I may be the asshole (as advertised in my title), at least I'm not a dumb ass. That would be you.

posted by  vwhobo

ooooo ur smart now :clap:

posted by  jzxTT

You're seriously like the biggest dumbass on these boards. I have seen about five of your posts and realized that.

You act like you're about 10.

posted by  Vassar

i had a feeling i would like you Vassar... :thumbs:

posted by  SuperJew


posted by  Nissan_240SX

Actually, that's not always true.

Stock automatics are tuned for smooth shifts, as they are considered a luxury item. Most buyers of stock automatics would complain about harsh shifts if the manufacturers sold them in the same form drag racers use.

But if you go to B&M, TCI, Art carr and others, you can get valve body kits that increase pressures on the bands, change shift points, etc, to make shifts happen faster and firmer. These shift improver kits can make a HUGE difference in how the automatic transmission works, giving you shifting that happens when you want it, instantly. This makes them shift faster than you could ever shift a manual, and allow the engine to make power during the shift (you can do that by "speed shifting" a manual, too, but you run the very real risk of missing the shift and/or damaging your transmission). Combined with a performance torque converter and you end up with an automatic transmission that slips less than you do when slipping the clutch to take off with a manual, and shifts faster than you do at gearchanges, and yet only shifts when you want it to by moving the lever.

Why is it so easy for people to think of all the things they can do to make a car faster or handle better but ignore the transmissions? How much power the car makes stock is only a starting point. How well it handles and stops is only a starting point. But then you think that how an automatic transmission works stock is the only way it can ever work... ?

This is why so many drag racers use built automatics: they shift faster, more consistently, and are actually very often quicker overall than their manual counterparts. We aren't talking new computer controlled transmissions, but such stalwarts of the racing scene as the Powerglide, the TH350 and TH400, C4 and C6, and Torqueflite 727. These are pretty common in cars that are running 7 and 8 second quarter mile times. When Arthur was talking the "big boys" he means cars runing in the fastest Street car Shootout series, like Nick Scavo's 7 second Camaro and the like. Yeah, faster classes, like Pro Stock, have used Lenco transmissions, but that's as far removed from a street manual as anything could be.

Now, why don't road racers use automatics? Pretty simple. In the early days, that's really all there was to choose from. As sports cars tended to become small and light, small engines were preferred. Small engines need to rev to make power, and they end up with fairly narrow powerbands. In order to have teh engine in it's powerband over teh course of a road racing circuit, you needed a lot of gears, matched to the ecxact powerband and weight of the car. Manual transmissions provided this in a relatively compact package. And what's more, it was easy to change gear ratios depending on the exact circuit you were racing on. Considering a transmission manufacturer like ZF, hewland, Getrag, or Coletti could have one case and hundreds of eaasily swapped gear ratios, that became very important. It's VERY hard to have multiple gear ratios that are easy to change with an automatic. Withut that ability, it's useless. Add to that the way an automatic does use more power to run, and you can see that a sub 1 liter racing engine making under 100 hp simply had to have the flexibility that a manual transmission offered.

But a large car wth a large displacement, high horsepower, torquey engine had more flexibility, and didn't need all those gear ratios. Changing the final drive ratio was enough to retain performance. AND it's easier to use than the rather stiff clutch necessary to handle all that torque.

that's why on dual purpose track/street cars that have high torque figures, I rpefer a built automatic. on the track I gain all the benefits of lightning quick shifts, and less chance of missed shifts and breakage, while on the street, there is increased comfort of not dealing with heavy clutch pedals in stop and go traffic.

On small engine cars, I only use manuals. All the cars I've bought new have had manuals. All my small engine race cars have been manuals, and I've gotten a number of trophies in them. I'm not as good as some of the national champions I race with, but I tend to be better than average at shifting. All my Porsches and VWs have been manuals. But my V8 RX7 autocross car had a built AOD, and the BMW in my sig now has a C6 that is getting the full B&M treatment to handle the hp of the big block V8 in it. It will also be an autocross and track day car, as well as a street monster.

I have no problem with car control, and I would like someone to come and point out where I didn't have enough control with my RX7 to win. I certainly had fun with it and will with the BMW, and I'd like someone to come and point out in my commute where shifting is ever done for fun in my manual transmission commuter car. In fact, I'd like to see where my RX7 was less fun than say, a stock 5 speed Civic DX or VW Bug. if a manual is always fun, and an automatic always not, that shouldn't be true.

Not to say a good manual transmission isn't a great thing at the right time. I do prefer a good sports car with a slick manual trans. But 90% of the time, I'm not shifting while driving even in a manual transmision car. FUN comes in not slowing down for a corner, or having a bunch of power slamming you back in your seat. It doesn't come from saying, "look at me, I shifted!. Oh, look! I did it again!" And control comes more from brakes and steering. I don't have ABS and yaw control for that very reason.

Sorry, been racing for a couple decades, and this is a pet peeve of mine: the unfounded hatred of automatic transmissions and the "automatic" labeling of people with automatics as "non drivers" and automatic equipped performance cars as a waste. It simply isn't true.

posted by  ChrisV

I take personel offense to your statement. I may be the biggest dumbass on these boards. :banana:

posted by  lectroid

::crickets:: No takers on this? :wink2:

Who's gonna argue with experience?

posted by  BavarianWheels

Noooo thank you. Personally, I love this man. Knows so much and explains it so damn well. :thumbs:

Reminds me of my friend, he wants to buy a new camaro but with an automatic. I don't have a problem with this, my car is auto, my dads car is auto, my dads old truck is auto. I think they are perfectly fine. But my other friend who owns a '95 civic hatchback manual flipped out on him about it, saying don't buy a sports car with an auto or you will look like a fag. Thats just a good example of how people can be narrow minded. I don't think my friend with the civic has ever really driven an auto car, he ABSOLUTLY insists everything has to be a manual for it to be fun. I fail to see the logic in that but whatever. I think that its alot more fun just like Chris said, working the brake and steering, not shifting from second to third. :2cents:

posted by  Vaspier

While I can agree out of ignorance that custom auto transmissions are quicker on the track (I have no real reason to doubt it), It is my opinion that manual is much more fun than auto. I do like the handling aspect of a good car, the stopping capability, and the "no fear" attitude the package brings to the enthusiast and the whole driving experience.

Having said that, I still prefer the power feel I get from changing gears and chirping the tires throughout...ok I can only get a chirp from 1st to 2nd and from 2nd to 3rd...but it still feels really good!!!

...and if I happen to edge out an auto ricer...with my old BMW's...5 spds...all the better. :smoke:

My wife drives the auto... :laughing: ...and I love the V8 power it has. :thumbs:

posted by  BavarianWheels

Not to be rude Bav. are you saying that only manual tranny cars can chrip the tires when changing gears? If thats the case, then i guess my brothers old camaro had a sort of sound devise that played the sound everytime it changed gears, same goes with my car. Again, I'm not trying to start anything, just letting you know that a manual is not needed to chirp the tires.

posted by  Vaspier

My V8 RX7 with the B&M AOD automatic could bark the tires into every gear, inlcuding overdrive under full throttle. If you backed out of it, it shifted firm and quick, but not so harsh as to slam the car around.

Don't get me wrong, I love a good car with a good manual transmision. Unfortunately, a lot of them really aren't all that good. And for commuting, shifting to neutral, then first, then neutral, first again, on and off the clutch, then maybe second, then back to first, then on to second, maybe third, back to second, back to first, back to second, baci to first, back to neutral, ad infinitum, it can suck what little fun there is IN shifting right out of it, and go into negative fun... ;) And even on my current commute, where I dont' have to deal with that, out of 15 minutes of driving, less than 2 minutes total time is spent using th eclutch, and it's ALWAYS for coming to a stop, or accellerating from a light, and none of it is really "fun." What I mean is, on the commute, it's no more fun to shift the Fiat Spyder than it is to let the Jaguar shift itself. The things that make the Fiat more "fun" have nothing to do with the transmission, and everything to do with the fact it's a small, agile, convertible sports car with a fun exhaust note, and in good weather, the breezes flowing around you.

If I drive up the Jersey Turnpike, most of the time I'm not shifting whether I'm in the Jag or the PT Cruiser, so the type of transmission really never comes into play.

The main thing is, occasionally a manual transmision can be "more fun" than an automatic. But I can see enough situations that are the opposite. My RX7 was more fun than a 5 speed Yugo, for example. And if you go someplace like F1 Boston, to the indoor Grand Prix kart tracks, or to Malibu Grand Prix, you can have huge amounts of fun driving and you never shift even once...

posted by  ChrisV

Not taken as rude.

No, I'm not saying that. I'm saying that I LIKE MAKING THE ENGINE/TRANSMISSION CAUSE THE CHIRP (not a yell...but emphasis) I don't doubt it is fun to drive an car with an auto trans. that can chirp through the gears...I just feel it is more fun when it is my driving style and experience (in my car) to do it. (others have driven my car and cannot chirp the tires...I just know my car, is all.)

And the RX V8...well no doubt that would be fun...but that is a customized car...all of mine are stock...with the exception of a stainless steel exhaust sys on the 528e and one of those cone K&N filters on the 325. When I'm consistently out running "customized" ricers in totally stock Bimmers...that's where the satisfaction hits home. :thumbs:

posted by  BavarianWheels

Ah, I got ya. Thanks for clearing that up Bav.

posted by  Vaspier

Sorry, double...

posted by  ChrisV

lol! Good response!

I only have issues with people who think that all automatics are the same as their mom's stock Accord or their grandpa's Oldsmobile,a nd that they can never be different. It's kind of like thinking all VWs are only as fast as an old Rabbit Diesel. Some automatics are fun, have as much control, and are quicker than most manuals. Some automatics suck bigtime (like the stock automatic in the PT Cruiser... there is almost 4 seconds difference 0-60 between the automatic equipped ones and my 5 speed version! I don't know HOW they got it to suck that bad!).

But there are a number of manual trans cars that are simply not fun, either, no matter how much you have to shift them.

It's only unsubstantiated theory that I have a problem with. ;)

posted by  ChrisV

Now I don't believe you wanted to do that :doh: The moderators can bring that post back if you ask them nicely :wink2: I was just about to quote you on what you said about your PT transmission.

Edit: Am I anything to do with the reason that we can't delete posts anymore :(

posted by  snoopewite

No...'twas a former disgruntled member. Started deleting his posts...and ultimately made threads disappear.

posted by  BavarianWheels

Well, I went to hit the "submit button" and I got a white screen with an "error, server timed out." When I hit the back button to try it again, my response was gone, so I just typed a short version.

After that one went through, I found the original still there, and I just went to delete it, but had to edit it instead. They both conveyed basically the same information; the second one was simply more concise.

posted by  ChrisV

I'm with you on this. I agree with what you've said to defend automatics as I drive an automatic Rav4 that has an overdrive button (nothing special but it's handy and improves my driving experience) and an ECT power button for when I'm driving in a "super aggressive" manner and not driving "like I have my thumb up my ass". I enjoy driving it once it's warmed up so that it changes gear how it should. The main con is that overdrive is 4th gear, making it even slower than a manual Rav4. There's a chance that I'll get a Jaguar X-type 4WD with a 5-speed automatic transmission for my next car in a few years time though :heh:

When/how did you think of that signature? I like that kind of thing.

:ticking: Disappearing threads? Not good

posted by  snoopewite made me quite mad! I lost 2 posts and my count went down. :banghead: :cussing:

posted by  BavarianWheels

Douglas Adams, The Hitchiker's Guide to the Galaxy

Another quote from that I like is: Some say that the universe is made so that when we are about to understand it it changes into something even more incomprehensible. And then there are those who say that this has already happened.

posted by  ChrisV

Sorry if yall have already got this post question out of the way, but my first car is a manual Honda Accord 4 banger that runs great, (besides some stuff like the windows and small things) i love it because it is manual.. although sometimes i wish i had an automatic since outside my neighborhood i hit heavy traffic... well anyways my point is... (i may not be right but..) i think manuals are great fun, the joy of shifting when i want, the "involvement" in my car; but i really think - this may not be talking bout everyone - (since im 17 and ive been driving for a year or more...) that when i first got my manual it was incredible when i got it down... but now i feel like its just a waste of energy *especially cuz my cars stock* i mean all im sayin is - for some ppl manuals are just fun for the first few months then u either get bored/tired of shifting or maybe ur still into it... sorry if my thoughts are all jumbled up im real tired and im gonna go fix some easy mac.. gnight :sleep: :soul: and austin go with manual boy u can just practice on mine

posted by  JaBoFordRid3r

I take it "austin" is silvercivicsi98. But anyways. Manual has never gotten "boring" for me (but then again, i've only been driving for a year :laughing: ). I love it, everyone who trys it always gets hooked, its a lot of fun... stop and go gets boooorrriiinnnnggg :sleep: .. but is better in traffic :thumbs: . The first car i ever drove was a stick. I wont be caught dead in an auto.
clutch popper forever :thumbs:

posted by  jzxTT

Yeah, when you loose posts, you're post count does tend to go down :screwy: :PP
It's okay though because you can make them back in that thread that's titled... well you know which one :laughing:

:doh: I'm too ignorant when it comes to well known literature. Thanks for the enlightenment.

What you were actually saying was okay to me. What I'll add is that sometimes when I used to drive manuals, I would wish that I had an automatic but now that I drive an automatic, I never wish that I had a manual. Here's a list of some situations where the pros to driving automatics come into play: -
1. Traffic.
2. Turning into junctions.
3. Slowing to a standstill.
4. Setting off from traffic lights, which in my case is off the footbrake and onto the accelerator with no wheel spin thanks to having a 4WD.
5. I would't find a manual Lamborghini Murcielago fun when I'm trying to get somewhere in an area that I don't know!
6. Slow driving and manoeuvres like in car parks. In all the manuals with low torque engines that I've driven, there's been a flat spot between first and second gear at around 10mph or so.

I know that some of the above examples have already been given but now we have a list to add to or discuss if anyone wants to.

posted by  snoopewite

Most of the people I have ever had issues with are in your situation: "I've only been driving for a year." Sorry, but as much as you love your car, you really don't have much overal experience. Your car is fun (if that's your Z) but 90% of the fun is from the whole package. If you were stuck driving an old 4 speed manual Yugo, you wouldn't have the fun experience to say that the transmission was that enjoyable.

What I'm saying is, don't close yourself off to the possibility that some cars with automatics can be loads of fun as well. Cars like my RX7, and the BMW in my sig. Both of which I could guarantee you are at least as fun as your car to drive.

I know when you're young and learning to drive stick that every time you shift, you're getting better. you notice it, and you are happy with your skills. But even though I love good manual trans cars, it won't be much longer until that shifting is second nature to you, and you won't notice it. At that point, the shifting isn't done for fun, but because the car needs to be shifted. You no longer go, "wow! Look at that! I shifted! And look there! I did it again!" at every shift. Your friends aren't impressed anymore, and it just becomes something you do as part of driving. And then you start to notice al the times when it's just a chore. That's when you get to the point I'm at: shifting is fun when you do it consciously for fun: a perfectly executed heel and toe downshift while going around the corner onto the entrance ramp for teh highway. But most of the time, it's just in the way. And you realize that in most driving situations, you can not only have just as much fun without moving your left foot, but in some cases it's MORE fun because you aren't being bothered by a chore you have to do constantly.

posted by  ChrisV

I agree.. my friends camaro is tons of fun to drive but i'd much rather have a manual trans* car. Its kind of like saying "I like my training wheels because i can come to a complete stop and not have to worrie about falling!" or, "I can doo a wheelie and not have to worrie about my left/right balance!". I like to know that Im controlling/shifting my car, not electronics.
Man vs. Machine :ticking:
::proud to say:: Yes that is my Z. :drool:

posted by  jzxTT

Just a question out of curiousity.

You said you have only been driving for about a year, which would make you about 16-17 in most states? How old are you?

posted by  Vassar

I turn 17 march 27th. :thumbs:

posted by  jzxTT

And what about Tiptronic, Selespeed or Autostick gearshifts? I think it's the best choice. Sometimes you fancy driving a manual car, but other times you prefer automatic ones.

posted by  karburator

That's a good point karburator but I've heard a lot about those kinds of transmissions lacking in responsiveness. Lets see what other posters have to say.

posted by  snoopewite

For the most part in stock form those are just regular automatics with a fancy shifter. The tuning of the transmission is still the same, and tuned more for luxury that outright performance. None of them in stock form shift as fast or as firm as a "regular" automatic transmission with a performance torque converter and performance valve body kit.

An example is the new PT Cruiser Turbo. The autostick version is over a second and a half slower to 60 mph than the 5 speed version, because the shifting in the autostick is still tuned towards smooth shifts.

posted by  ChrisV

But, on the other hand, you have BMW's SMG II transmission that is extremly sporty, isn't it?

posted by  karburator

It's not a conventional automatic with paddle shifting, nor is it an autostick. Internally, it's basically a manual transmission with a computer controlled clutch activation system and shifting.

posted by  ChrisV

how about that Audi Direct Shift Gearbox on the TT 3.2?

posted by  SuperJew


posted by  archangle

The only automatic cars that I know of that were quicker than their manual counterparts were the dodge muscle cars with the 727 torqueflite. The 440 6 pack car with a 727 would run nose to nose with the 426 manual.

A more normal circumstace is a 305 camaro with a 5 speed running nose to nose with a 350 automatic camaro of the same year.

Stock automatics are designed to shift slow and smooth, not fast. Seeing as how he's talking about just getting a car and not being a "big dog", the manual will be quicker due to faster shifts (once he gets good) and lower parasitic losses.

Also, where do you get automatics being stronger than manuals? If that were so i'd assme you'd see alot more automatics in things like over the road trucks and dump trucks. Neither one is inheirently stronger than the other, but the manual is more resilient to abuse.

AS FOR the original question, who gives what everyone else thinks, drive what you want. I also have to agree that driving a stick poorly is alot more embarrassing than being a poser with an automatic. Personally i'm a manual man all the way. Started when i was 12 in a '67 F-100 with a 3 on the tree. Six years later i refuse to drive an automatic unless absolutely necessary. I have my truck that i daily drive (3 speed+compound underdrive) and my bug that I show (3 speed+OD). The truck is alot of fun in the rain since it has a stick and a spooled rear axle, going sideways down the street at will is quite the exhilarating exprience :hi:


EDIT: I didn't realize there were 5 pages to this post,so if it seems kinda out of order it's because only made it through the first page or two. oops.

posted by  Hoxviii

What kind of a response is that? lol....just 'Manual' out of nowhere at all..any reasoning behind that? because I cant help but notice that at least 50 of your 55 posts here are one or two word replies lol :banghead: . As for all this Tiptronic, selespeed etc I'd steer clear of those, I've driven an Alfa Romeo with the Selespeed transmission in it and not only does it feel wierd (just like a clutchless manual) but it lacks response, so snoop, what you hear is right...Dont even get me started on Ferrari's lame attemp at a Semi-Auto lol. BTW Hox, your post didn't sound out of place at all, especially when you take a gander at archangles post :banghead:

posted by  Cliffy

yeah i agree with the guy up a bit......look for a model betwen 93 and 98 and go for the 5spd. or if ur kinda into a heavily built up area (now im not sure if you can convert this to the civic or not) btu you could see if you can install a tiptronic gear box whcih allows both to sum extent.

as i sed, im not sure if this is possible and actually dont think it would be.

good luck :thumbs:

posted by  haydo

I have my truck that i daily drive (3 speed+compound underdrive) and my bug that I show (3 speed+OD). The truck is alot of fun in the rain since it has a stick and a spooled rear axle, going sideways down the street at will is quite the exhilarating exprience


does seem quite exhilarating!! what kid of truck do you have?? do u hav any problems with ur compound underdrive?

posted by  haydo

So how come people think that you can mod the hell out of an engine or suspension, but bringing up a $45 shift kit in an automatic is unfair and that we can only talk about stock automatics?

Is that so when it comes down to it, you can rely on comments like this

to insult cars with automatics, thus conveniently ignoring all the drag race cars with automatics, and all the street cars with inexpensive B&M, TCI, and Art Carr parts in their TH350s, TH400s, 700R4s, C4s, C6s, AODs, etc? A car with oh, $10k into the engine is a sweet ride, while one with a $45 shift kit is "cheating" and "not representative" because it isn't stock?

A LOT of enthusiasts who don't drive stock vehicles like automatics behind high power engines for a LOT of reasons, most have been spelled out here. I like manuals behind small engines in sports cars and GTs. The only cars I've bought new have been chosen with manuals. But the fastest cars I've owned have all had automatics, for various reasons (no, the 911s were not the fastest cars I've owned...) My Fiat 124 Spyder has a manual. Suits the car and the engine. My Jaguar XJ6 has an automatic. Also suits the car and the engine. My PT has a manual, as did my SVT Contour. In both cases, the cars had small engines that are best suited to manuals. the BMW, below, has an automatic. When it's done, I welcome people who think automatics are no fun to come ride in it on the track... Like I did with my V8 RX7.

posted by  ChrisV

I should have put poser with an automatic in quotes. Everyone else was making it sound like only wannabes run automatics and it seemed like he was starting to take on that point of view, so i was just bringing up two sides. Either you can be seen as a "poser with an automatic" or a "poser that can't drive a stick". Taken in full context I was basically saying either way someone is gonna rag you for it, but it's alot more embarrassing to be ridiculed for not being able to drive a stick than driving an automatic.

The truck is a 1985 F-150 4x4 spooled front and rear (i never run 4x4 on the street). Trust me, spools out back are NOWHERE near as bad as alot of people make them out to be. I've been driving spooled for about six months now and it has never gotten away from me. As for the compound underdrive, it's stock. 1st gear is a 6.69 and then 2-4 has a standard 3 speed spread. It sucks being 1:1 on the highway, but since most of my driving is city i don't take a hit on mileage.


posted by  Hoxviii

Fair enough. :thumbs:

posted by  ChrisV

1st off.... Hi to everyone. I found this forum by doing a search for lenco transmissons in Google. I figured while im here Ill sign up and reply to this great topic even though Im a Domestic guy.

You need to listen to Chris V when he talks about automatics with manual valve bodys and higher stall converters. You get the best of both worlds: extremely hard shifts, manual shifting and NO clutch action needed. I run ATI built th350 with a manual valve body and a 4000 rpm stall converter. This is in a high 10 sec 78z Camaro that I drive on the street. Talk about neck snapping shifts. Nothing like it. Don't get me wrong sticks are great but unless your running a bruno or lenco style tranny, autos are where its at in the drag racing world.



You should go manual, it takes a while to get the hang of but once you do it more fun to drive. Automatic don't put you in control and thats fine if the cars just transportation, but if you like to drive, go manual.

posted by  Chiefduluth

In control, huh? So, what part, exactlly, of my car was i not in control of that made me win at autocrossing?

90% of being in control of the car (and to be honest, 90% of driving) has to do with everything BUT shifting. When you're driving down the interstate, and not shifting at all, are you simply not in control? And even with a stock automatic you can choose the gear you want to be in (though it admittedly ins't as precise as a mildly modded automatic or a manual). But I haven't ever been out of control of a car because it had an automatic in it...

When you go to someplace like Grand Prix Karts, Malibu Grand Prix, or F1 Boston, are you not in control of the kart, and not having fun, because there's no shifter at all? 45mph and 1.5 G cornering is no fun, and you have no control because you don't shift, ever?

While there are a lot of stock automatic cars that are no fun, there are a lot of stock manual trans cars that are no fun, either. Some cars are better with manuals, and some are better with automatics. And you can only say, "look at me, I shifted" so many times before it gets old...

posted by  ChrisV

posted by  SuperJew

ya, i agree with vwhobo, AT suck ass, i have a Eagle Talon TSi, its turbo and AWD, and how much cooler does it sound when ever i shift you hear the piiittssshhhh of the BOV, and i lllooooovvveeee downshiftin into tight turns, anyone who drives an AWD car knows the death grip they have on the road, and the fun you have drifting em in the dirt :orglaugh:

posted by  Talon TSi

Beat 'em with a stick.

posted by  DodgeRida67

Is there even a debate here? Manual vs. Auto..... man thats a hard choice......not

posted by  Voda48

ya, there definatley is no comparison, MT all the way, and who's the dummy who said AT can go faster? in case you dont know, generally, if a car is a 5-spd manual, its gonna be a 4 spd AT, and 5-spds have closer gear ratios, and then 5th gear will usually take you to the end of the speedometer, my talon's speedometer goes to 170, ive got it to 150, then i ran outta road, but i still had another 1000 rpms until redline, so it is geared to go 170 and you can go 170 if youve got the balls, just make sure you got good tires, dont try and top out in 5th gear if you have a spare tire on.

posted by  Talon TSi

hello! just stopped by as i was searching for some tranny related things and couldn't help but to try and dispell the myth that "autos suck" .. you know, the typical reaction, "whuuuh? wtf you want an auto?"

first, it's a FACT that automatics are inherently stronger (per mass) simply because of the planetary gearing used. with a manual, there's essentially just one point of contact per gear mating that the force of the engine flows through i.e. single "path" of force. whereas with an automatic, meaning planetary, the gears are meshed together (different ratios come about by holding certain gears in that mesh and forcing others to turn) so there's always some natural balance/ counter action as well as spreading of that force.

second, the quick cars with the autos, just a couple examples:
- scranton's nhra record setting, 6 sec, 200mph celica w/ twin turbo tundra motor (punched out to 331ci): 3 speed lenco automatic.
- venom supra: 2-speed powerglide automatic
- couple other supras, dsms, rotary's: 3-speed chevy th350's th400's, some 4-speeds domestic based autos, powerglides
- - turbo mustang, now running 7.1x secs: 3-speed bruno automatic
- - see featured car page, some with videos: various 3-speed ford c4, c6 automatics, 2-speed powerglides (yes, street cars):
- - 3-speed th350 and th400 trannys + lockup, see various cars there (can handle 2500hp)
- - 1200hp/ vette, auto, electronic shift (programmable)
- my own truck when it's done: 3-speed ford aod automatic

third, for most of the examples mentioned above you MUST *shift* the autos yourself, including mine. so unfortunately, the term "automatic" is a misnomer. it has _nothing_ to do with whether you can shift it yourself or not. the definitive difference between an automatic and a manual tranny is the internal gear mechanisms. automatic = planetary (meshed gears driving each other in parallel). manual = sequentially driven gears (i.e. one gear turns another which then turns another, and so on)

lastly, manuals certainly do have their place as well. for those that want finer control over gear *engagement* (if you're willing to burn some clutch :) ), or for those that need extra tranny gears (to help with smaller engines or taller axle ratio, or just more gear selection; an auto really grows in size for lots of speeds) and want more engine braking.

posted by  jimveta

UMM 44 tonner with an auto would be interesting it would give BW some work trying to make a 48 speed auto.

posted by  cinqyg

MT beats AT manual is much more fun :hi:

posted by  Lukaz

To basically answer this guy's question, the manual seems cooler. I personally like the manual better because it allows more contol over the performance of an engine. The manual takes a bit more thinking so you must give some credit there. Any one can drive an AT. One can skip gears or ride power bands more easily with a manual. Then again it could be that my AT Geo sucks (I am comparing it to a manual sephia). My motorcycle is the only manual that I own right now. I prefer the sound of a car with a manual in that you can run the vehicle at lower RPMs or higher to make it sound different. As long as you can control it people will probably think better of you if you have a manual. I think manuals are cheaper to replace if you blow the tranny. the Geo's was.

posted by  armedXandXready

I dont think it takes more thinking i just change gear automatically, well i drive automatically,hands and feet do the thinking so i dont have to.

posted by  cinqyg

I agree i dont even think about changing gear anymore it comes automatically to mind. maybe at the start you have to think and concentrate on changing gears but its simple really

posted by  Lukaz

the thing i have to concentrate most on is one way systems and nasty round abouts

posted by  cinqyg

U retard :cussing: , if u think autos are better, give me a legitamite example of when auto is better? huh? yeah, and besides they aren't quicker, line up an auto civic with a manual civic, and then u'll see :laughing: . I know it's a special case, but it works with any car.

posted by  allroundcarguy2

No, it doesn't. How many racing automatics have you driven? Ones with valve bodies modded with B&M, TCI, Art Carr, or TransForm internal springs and gaskets? How many have you driven with torque converters matched to engine outputs? How many manuals have you driven that shift quicker than one of those automatics (like the one I built for my V8 RX7)?

You simply HAVEN'T. You DON'T have the experience, as is the case with MOST of the kids on this board.

An automatic behind a built V8 will deliver MORE torque to the ground, will shift FASTER and MORE consistently. It will MAKE power DURING the shift, as the engine rpms never drop like they do when you shift manually (unless you "power shift" and leave your foot to the floor. But if you do that, most of the time you will miss the shift, and ALL of the time you will reduce the life of your transmission).

Jesus Christ! Go back and adress my previous posts point by point INTELLIGENTLY, showing how you HAVE the experience to make the claims you do for ALL cars and ALL transmissions.

Just because it's your OPINION doesn't mean the REASONS you've formed that opinion can't be examined to see if they are valid or not!

In stock form, the average automatic is a luxury item, and tuned for smoothness (as most consumers would balk at stock automatics that shift as firm as performance versions). But acting as though the stock tuning is how all automatics are, and can only be, is like saying 4 cyl cars can never be as fast as any other car. It's like saying NO Civics can run 10 second quarter miles because STOCK ones can't. It's like saying NO VW could ever be a good race car, because the tired old 4 cyl Golf GL your dad had was slow.

posted by  ChrisV

Looks Like We Have Yet Another Newbie With A Big Mouth.

posted by  Ki2AY

We had another CarGuy that had the same problem...could be one in the same. :banghead:

posted by  BavarianWheels

hey guys, i must just firstly say sorry but I've only skimmed the whole subject here and if I'm repeating anyone else then forgive me eh?

i personally hate automatic trans!!! if your gonna race a track or enjoy pushing your car round some of the twisty stuff you cant do it in an auto!!
In saying that, that dont include the bmw shifter my boss had in his M3csl. that was just a manual without a clutch.

If your talking 1/4s though? you might (should) have noticed most are going auto in the jap fast4 scene. one guy here in particular shaved almost a second off from just going auto in his rx7.

As for tiptronic :fu: quite simply! Mitsubishi have just recalled ALL 96-97 tiptronic ayc/tcl vr-4 galants!

So my 2pennys worth is, manual!!! unless your driving in straight lines only!

posted by  Unlicensed

good point, :smoke: but drag racing is for those who don't care how their car turns, or they just dunno how to work their suspension :2cents: Bottom line; real racers turn both ways :thumbs:

posted by  allroundcarguy2

Yes, you can. Is it fun being uninformed and closed minded?

Twisties have to do with STEERING and GRIP and BRAKING. Going around corners has very little to do with a clutch pedal.

As I said before, road racers used manual transmissions because A) they primarily used small engines with narow powerbands, and B) they needed to match the rpms of those small engines to the weight of the car, and the sequnse of corners ona given race track (and thus to haow fast they were going IN each of the corners). This changed from track to track, so they needed to be able to have multiple gearsets with different ratios for each track to kep the engine in the right part of the powerband to maximise speed in every part of the track, in order to win. You can't get this with an automatic, as making multiple sets of planetary gears for different size engines, different powerbands, and different tracks, is simply way too expensive.

Larger engines dont NEED those gear ratios, so only having onew widely spaced ratio set is usually sufficient, and if you're not going for that last tenth of a second to beat the other guy, then hard cornering doesn't involve the gear ratios in the trans at ALL. It ONLY involves the car's balance and grip. And if you're not going endurance road racing, but merely rapid street cornering or hard cornering in autocross, heating up the transmission isn't a factor, so the ONE other downfall of a road racing automatic is negated.

Hating performance automatics is retarded. Especially when you are hating them for unfounded and factually mistaken reasons. Preferring manuals is fine. *I* prefer manuals in many cases, and every new car I've bought has had one, as well as every small engine car I've ever raced. But I have very successfully raced larger engine cars with automatics in purely handling contests.

posted by  ChrisV

Real racers are involved in a competetive speed event, be it top speed, accelleration, oval, road race, pavement, dirt, ice.

Please, do NOT make it a goal to be as narrowminded as you can be.

If I can like drag racing, oval track, rallye AND road racing, so can you. It's not that hard if you have more than 2 brain cells active.

posted by  ChrisV

you make a very good point

posted by  87TurboII

I know this sounds really silly but arnt automatics and big V8's genrally heavier, i am sure that we are all aware that they have a larger power band.

Weight has always been an enemy of agility which is alot of what rallying is about otherwise wouldnt WRC all be kitted out with V8's and autos.

You and gearbox arguments just seem to go together like a horse and cart.

posted by  cinqyg

i'm not going to get bitchy like some of ya on this topic cos i really dont care THAT much!

simply though, if you wanna race a track you want to have your engine braking too. If autos where any good next to the manual they would be used by motorsports. there not, there for negating the arguement!

as for small minded, i aint the one verbely bashing my opinion on everyone and not open to listening to others points.

posted by  Unlicensed

I dont know about you but automatic = easy and boring, manual = challenging and fun. No matter what way you look at it you can do anything in a stick that you can do in an automatic better. NOW CLOSE THIS THREAD ITS BEEN HERE FOREVER. :mrgreen:

posted by  jzxTT

Ummm, you started out bashing from the start. you had your mind made up about your opinion, and apparently didn't want to listan to what I had said earlier. So it is YOU in fact who didn't want to listen to other's points.

I, OTOH, listened to your points and refuted them. Get a clue.

posted by  ChrisV

Actually they aren't necessarily bigger and heavier. As I proved in my RX7, the V8 and automatic combi in it was still lighter than a stock 13B Turbo and 5 speed in a stock RX7 TII (my car weighed 2720 lbs without any effort made at lightening the car, and a stock RX7 turbo II of the same year weighs 2850 lbs).

In the case of cars that have inline 6s, generally a V8 like the Ford 5 liter and teh LS1 Chevy 5.7 liter are lighter and shorter. So if a BMW M3 with an inline 6 is agile, then the same car or another similar weighted car with a 5 liter Ford or 5.7 liter chevy are going to be equaly as agile.

You are apparenlty completely ignoring 90% of what I've wriotten. the specious argument of "well if they were better why isn't _____ using them" is retarded and shows you are not thinking through the whole scenario. if weight is the enemy of agility, why aren't all WRC racers using variations of Lotus Elises with AWD? Apparentl;y 4 door sedans that weigh as much as my V8 RX7 are much more suitable than ultra lightweight sports cars, too. So your arguemnt is meaningless. WRC cars use what they do because that's what the rules allow. Why dont' they, since money is no object, use the same engines as are ijhn the lighter F1 and F3 race cars? That makes as much sene as your agument about why dont' they use V8s and automatics.

I explained why small engine cars with narrow pawerbands need multiple gearsets to be able to match everything up perfectly for each trask, and be easily changed while at the track. AND that typeical automatics will tend to overheat in endurance racing (and rallying certainly is that). I also pointed out that in sprint racing, autocross, and street use, none of the things that an endurance road racer or rally car have to deal with are a factor for the transmission. So in performance street driving, autocross, or track day events, you aren't going to need multiple gearsets that are esily swppable for varying conditions, and you dont' have to worry about heat buildup.

Please, if you're going to argue, do so intelligently and think before typing.

That's because I have decades of experience in them, so when idiots denigrate them for bullsh*t reasons, I'll be there to correct them on it. Once YOU have experience in a subject that is constantly brought up, then YOU will be associated with that subject in the same way. If someone constantly insuted that MOWAG you drove, and said things about it that weren't true on a constant basis, yo'd be there to correct them, and people would stat thinking that you and MOWAG info went together like a horse and cart.

Yes, just like someone saying anything about ANYTHING that isn't true, people that know better will be there to correct them. And if the people who posted the derogatory staments to START with argue that their "opinions" are not being listened to, then THOSE peopole are the idiots, not the people correcting them.

If someone came on here and said all BMWs were slow, rusty POS and anyone who buys one is an idiot, how do you think BMW fans would react, even if they dont' own one right now? Do you think they'd say "wow. YOu ahve an opinion. I have to respect that." or do you think that they'd say, "you're full of shite."

And if the person who put down BMWs responded by saying, "well, I had an old BMW 320i that was rusty and slow, and broke down a lot, so my opinion is true." do you honestly think everyone would say, " you know, he has a point. Since his old BMW 320 WAS slow, rusty and broke down, then by God, they ALL must be! Thsnk God he saved us from liking those horrible BMWs!"

No, most people would say, "you're an idiot." because he would be one.

posted by  ChrisV

MNo. As long as you say things like that that aren't true, people need to learn. YOU Wnat it closed baceus YOU dodn't want to LEARN anything. is it more fun to be closed minded?

I want you to come ride with me in my Fiat on a commute, then with me in my jag, and show me where, shifting the fiat, teh shifts THEMSELVES are fun, or where theSHIFTING makes teh commute more fun than in the jag with it's stock automatic. If you can PROVE that the SHIFTING is what makes the commute fun in the Fiat, then [i[and only then[/i] will you start to convince me.

And then, I want you to go to the local indoor, high speed karting track. I want you to spend the time on the track racing those karts, where you don't have to shift, and tell me point blank that you had no fun. And that the WHOLE reason you had NO fun is because you never got to shift.

If driving those carts without shifting is fun (and I have yet to find a sports car afficianado who doesn't have fun on fast karts) then you'll understand what I'm talking about.

Oh, and if you think racing my V8 RX7 in an autocross was somehow easy and no challenge because it had an automatic, and it would have been vastly harder and more fun with a stick, you're smoking some serious drugs.

posted by  ChrisV

Sorry, had to come back to this...

I do care, because I'm tired of the ignorant masses making statements that aren't true, about a hobby and genre that I enjoy. If you don't care, then why bother even posting on an automotive forum at all?

[quote]simply though, if you wanna race a track you want to have your engine braking too. If autos where any good next to the manual they would be used by motorsports. there not, there for negating the arguement![/quote

As I said above, you are ignopring 90% of what I posted about WHY they aren't used in road racing. Please read it and use intelligent rebuttal, not a platitude. I explained the wole reasponing behind having multiple gearsets, the need for lower heat buildup, etc. Handling isn't any part of why an automatic is or sint' used.

As for engine braking, as I've said, a built automatic can have quite a bit of engine braking as well, especially from higher rpms, as the torque converter is locked up, giving a direct connection like a clutch. But since you apparently never looked into how an automatic works, especially a built up one, then you're making statments out of ignorance of their functionality.

But, even then, engine braking is a minort portion of the road racing need. How much roads racing have you done? How much road racing classes have you taken? I was an SCCA driving instructor for a while, and have been on the track quite a bit. if your'e not on teh gas, youre' on the brakes. Engine braking is coasting, and coasting is not the fast way around the track. You are on the throttle all teh way to th ebraking point, and then you are using your brakes, not engine braking, to slow down. And as soon as you let off the brakes, you are back on teh throttle. Engine braking only enters the picture if you have overheated your brakes.

Saying you can't use an automatic in road racing because it doesn't have as much engine braking is absolutely incorrect.

posted by  ChrisV

hell, everyone should have fun when driving karts, in fact, even the smaller go-carts are fun.

in fact, a friend of mine has one of those RC cars that work with gasoline and that can go pretty damn fast, and even that thing is fun as hell. its amazing how a little thing like that can move so well.

posted by  Inygknok

no I dont have any knowledge of built auto transmission. How would I? I race the gravel in a wrx and have never raced an auto. I talk only of road cars I have owned and sold. Pushing it through gravel I do use the engine quite alot and use it succesfully. I'm not a pro by any means but not a begginer either.

as for large engines, I guess being american your idea of large differs from mine. as large engine in the uk would mean anything above 2.0lt really.

I dont wanna get into a "mines better than yours" row over any of this so I'll leave the thread there i think.

I'll just say that I've never got any fun from driving an auto so far. maybe I aint driven the right ones or something, but thats my experiance.


posted by  Unlicensed

Well people all i have to say is.... ARE TOP FUEL DRAGSTERS AUTO???? I doubt it, especially if i seen the 5 clutch plates they put in on tv. But idunno :wink:. Turst me manual is hundreds of millions of times better than auto. Auto is boring, and boring, and just boring. And i have to say autos are not very precise. If you floor it from a dead stop the revs'll go up to about 500 from redline then it finally switches and most cars are way past top torque levels @ that rpm. I personally go to 4500-5000 and on my stock eclipse i could get tires to spin shifting to 4th. Im a good stick instructor.... 1st is hardest and reverseis the exact same as first pretty much. Just let off the clutch slower and everything is easy. Oh yeah if you are a good driver (dont try if u doubt yourself) learn to doubleclutch. THAT is a blast. I wont tell how to do it though.

posted by  VMJYogi

Umm....okay i just read more of everyone's posts. Like the guy with the nice lookin' black integra said "CLOSE THIS POST". And i don't mean that manuals are better than autos as far as precision or racing or anything. Okay just so i dont have anyone breathing down my neck. What i'm trying to say is that daily driving manuals is funner. Autos are so simple and this kid has a civ okay (remember that one that started this post). Not a funny car. Hes gonna be driving the car down the street too. Not just on a friggin track so i say manual. Theres no question about it. And besides whats the point of argueing so much. Whats the top end difference 5-20 mph? You want speed that bad just strap urself to a fighter jet. His car wont be modded to the point where anything'll really matter. I mean if he does race most will be on the street and i doubt he'll be vs. anyone with some blah, blah super tranny. Hes gonna race another civ with the stock tranny like everyone else with a civ does. If anything i say screw the honda/acura models alltogether. They suck. My lightweight 91 eclipse will beat the brakes off those cars. I love my cars handling. The only other import that i like besides early eclipses (not later model ones) are nissans. like the 240 and 300. RX-7 are nice too. I heard supras break down too easily.

posted by  VMJYogi

Oh yeah. American muscle deserves a good hand shake as well. Those ae some damn fine cars. I prefer imports. And im not the ignorant Fast and Furious want a tv in my car stupid type of kid either. I just know what each has to offer and im not that into top end power im only gonna be going down my block people jeez. If i wanted super power id no doubt go with a muscle car. I'd mod the hell out of one of those bad boys and dog walk any import. But imports have their advantages too though. Small, light cars. Find a good modder and he'll be pushing over 600whp out that lil 4 banger. Only prob. is the engine life with that much power. But people that do that to their cars are usually undergound people. They race and make more money than u'd think. (i know one).They could replace the engines. Well on a final note... U want a good car dont think about manual or auto. The truth is most races u have will be on the street. and if ur not no damn punk those streets'll have some twisties. Get the best handling/breaking package u can be4 u go out trying to change ur trannie. I'd say coilovers with struts and sways. Big breaks with dimple/slotted NOT drilled/slotted. 4 piston calipers. Then ur 1/4 times wont matter cuz on the turns u'll gain car lengths on them boyz.

posted by  VMJYogi

first of all......... let me get something important done first....

/me post-whore-slaps Yogi

Yogi u post whore!!!

ok second.... ummm.... auto trans have clutches too :P, hell, even some Yo-Yo's have clutches.

posted by  Inygknok

Ha ha ha ha....I have nothing to say

posted by  VMJYogi

manual. now close this damn thread. :mrgreen:

posted by  jzxTT

An auto tranny might not have the brains to shift to the right gear after entering/exiting a corner, especially on cars with narrow pwr bands :hi: and not being able to match the revs goin into a corner could cost u a race, that is if ur racing closely with one another. Sure everyone is entitled to their own opinion and this is mine :mrgreen:

posted by  allroundcarguy2

But you feel like you're knowledgeable enough to make generalizations about many things you've NEVER owned, and are willing to argue that you are correct, even without that actual knowledge. And that's the point. if you dont' have the experience with the items in question, don't fecking argue about it. learn from the people who DO have the experience.

The interesting thing is that people like you never even concieve of the idea of a modifiec transmission. Never even concieve o fthe idea that you can indeed make major changes for very little money. Oh, you'll go on about the hundreds of modifications you can make to your WRX's engine and suspension, never thinking for a moment that the way they come stock is the ONLY way that they ever have to be, or that the way they work stock is the BEST they will ever work, but talk about transmissions, especially automatics, and suddenly a stock one is the only way they could ever be, and no one could ever make them better. Your assumption is that if they could, they would. Which is silly, otherwise every engine woould have all the parts on it that you are modding it with already. If they could, they would, right? Every performacne car would have full race suspension on it, stock, as well, and you wouldn't be able to upgrade them ata ll for th esame reason: if they could they would already.. But there's a reason that the production WRX doesn't have full race suspension and 400+ hp. And it's the same reason that factory automatics are not tuned for all out performance.

Right. A 5 liter (302-306 cubic inch) engine is a small engine. One of the smallest displacements available in a factory V8. I've built streetable 600 hp 460 cubic inch V8s. It costs all of $1500-2000 to build a streetable, street legal V8 of that size with that power output in a daily driver vehicle. And trust me, in a daily driver that has 600 hp and 700+lb ft of torque, a buit automatic is the best way to get the power to the ground, whether it's a drag car or a slalom car.

And that's the point. Stock ones are tuned for luxury, regardless of what part of the world you're in, though some of the new Mercedes ones are getting variable tuning to allow the "sport mode" to get almost as hardcore as the performance automatics avaialble inexpensively over here. But wihtout having accfess to what we've got over here, you aren't going to have experienced them. the key would then be not to argue about them, and realize that your position might be wrong.

I've never said stock automatics WILL be more fun. All I've been contending since the start is that there is more to the world of automatics than the stock ones in your mom's Accord, or the luxury ones in the typical Jaguar. And the performance ones available often DO work better than manuals for many applications. And a good performance automatic will be just as good at going around corners on twisty roads and tight tracks as a manual. been there, done it. With both. if you've never done it in a car like my RX7, or my race Mustangs, then you really don't know. I've done it in those cars, and in manual transmision sports cars and GTs. I have back to back experience over the course of a couple decades. Which is why I argue the point.

Every car I've bought new has had a manual trans. 2 of the 3 cars I drive daily right now have manual trans. But the fastest cars I've owned have all had built automatics.

posted by  ChrisV

*sigh*, so you fecking shift it yourself. It doesn't HAVE to have brains. A modded performance automatic can do BOTH. Leave it in auto mode for daily driving, and move the lever yourself for instant, firm shifts when and where you want them, faster than you can with a manual, with no chance of missing a shift or damaging the synchros.

The modding of the trans with a $50 shift kit changes the pressures in the various valves, which increases the pressure on the bands, moves the plentary gearsets faster, and routes the hydraulics inside faster. The shifts happen virtually instantly (much faster than "speed shifting" a manual), up or down, when YOU want them. Ther is no computer control, no vacuum control, etc. it's a purely mecahnical hydraulic device with no brains of it's own.

And if you use an aftermarket torque converter, after it's turning 2000 rpm, it's pretty much locked up with no more slipping than a clutch has. So when shifting between 4000-6000 rpm, there is no torque converter slippage, just seamless power delivery.

Sure you're entitled to your own opinion. But you should learn to base that opinion on something tangible, not on guesswork.

posted by  ChrisV

Ok, yopgi, if you read my post, i want to know where in daily driving, my jaguar with it's automatic is more boring that my Fiat spyder with a manual, and show me during my commute where it's due to the transmission.

How long have you been driving? if you've been driving a while you know that you don't even think about most shifts you make. If you're not thinking about them, then they aren't adding to the "fun" and you wouldn't miss them if you didn't have to shift during that time.

Do you drivie around and every shift go, "look at me, I shifted! Look, I did it again. And again! Isn't this FUN?"

then I'dlike you to drivei my RX7 on a track and point out how it's less fun to corner at 1.2 Gs in a car that runs sub 4 second 0-60s than it is to drive your car, and where teh transmission has anything to do with it.

then we'll go to one of the local indoor kart tracks, where you ride the 40+ mph race karts in 15 minute heats. And I defy you to have a good time in them, even though you never shift the kart at all! I dare you to be bored. But it should be just as boring to you as a stock automatic equipped car, right? Shifting is apparent;y all that makes driving not boring to you, right? Even though it takes up barely 2% of your actual driving time!!!!!!!!!!!!

And you let the clutch out at idle, right? Or do you slip it until you've gotten into the powerband? Sorry, but you do the EXACT same thing in a manual as you accuse an automatic of doing. You just don't see it.

As for the shifting near redline, for performance use you should shift your car well above teh torque peak, and right at the power peoak. Guess what? that's exactly where you are saying the automatic shifts at.

Anda agin, that's in STOCK form. You obviously have never driven one with a $50 shift kit in them. Probably were unaware that such a product exists, even though you have no probelm identifying the hundreds of products that make your ENGINE perform better than it does, stock. Or is a stock engine the best it weill ever perform, too,a nd if a DSM makes 210 hp in stock form, that's all it will ever make?

The reason people want this closed is that they want it to match their minds. New information is painful to a closed mind, and since, at a young age, you have your mind thoroughly made up without having ANY experience in what I'm talking about, you don't want your fantasy world ruined by actual, factual information. It might make you have to think, and we wouldn't want that, now would we? And instead of going out and trying to expeerience what I'm talking about, and maybe learning something, you want to argue your side, with no experience, and no intention of actually learning something you haven't experienced.

posted by  ChrisV

he has a point there and ill give a very quick reply as to why. its actually a very easy concept and for us car fans, its something we see every single day.

ill take the WRX for example. it produces max torque at around 4,000rpms and its top horsepower comes quite a while later. so heres an easy question, do u shift at 4,000rpms or do u shift at where the peak hp is produced? i dont know about some guys, but i definately shift shift my car at its max hp point, which is at 5.600rpms stock, but ofc, sometimes i let it go a bit further.

some cars dont keep producing torque all across their powerbands and keep going to where their horsepower goes, but others do, but all in all, ull find urself shifting right where their peak hp is at.

torque is for pushing, hp is for making that torque come in as fast as possible and giving the momentum caused by it a bit more use by pulling it a bit further after its gone (common case in stock cars and cars with little mods).

its like when playing soccer (football for the rest of the world). the players kick the ball, and the ball rolls a bit forward, then as soon as the ball slows down a bit again, it gets kicked again.

the comparison is this, the kicking the ball is the torque, which is wat pushes it forward, while the momentum then causes it to keep pulling until it reaches its pinaccle of movement, remains at a static speed for a second or 2 (peak hp), n then comes back down and gets kicked again (like upshifting).

also, if yogi didnt know, HP is another way of measuring kW, kilowatts (a form of electricity for those of u who may not know). torque is also measured in Nm, a form of Force. if u took physics class, then u should realize that chrisv is pretty much right about everything hes said about this particular subject. ill leave it here, cuz its supposed to be a simple explanation. if u wanna argue about it, ill diversify a bit more and extend it for your understanding.

as for the auto vs manual ordeal, ive driven go-karts quite a few times, and damn, thats a very fun experience even if i dont have to shift. also, many top drag cars use automatic transmissions for dragstrips. hell, some even only have 3 or 4 shifts. sure, manual trans are good for handling and all cuz u can pretty much control the car for turning and such, but my old boss's ferrari was still hella fun with its paddle shift, which can be compared to the shifter of an automatic trans.

all in all, it depends on the use of the car. its the purpose that matters, and that purpose is wat even determines wat things are actually needed for the application and which arent. quite simple really.

posted by  Inygknok

Can all these old knowledgable people read the FIRST 6 SENTENCES OF MY SECOND REPLY!!!!! What im trying to say is that to drive to the local WalMArt from my house seems better in a manual than in an auto. When u have an auto there is nothing to do. Obviously not at speeds where u'll reach redline or where u'd need any god damn quick shift kits. okay? now if u notice any other crap u'd like to complain about then say so. And im also taking back the ill whoop any honda/acura's ass part as well. Okay!!!!

posted by  VMJYogi

Can all these old knowledgable people read the FIRST 6 SENTENCES OF MY SECOND REPLY!!!!! What im trying to say is that to drive to the local WalMArt from my house seems better in a manual than in an auto. When u have an auto there is nothing to do. Obviously not at speeds where u'll reach redline or where u'd need any god damn quick shift kits. okay? now if u notice any other crap u'd like to complain about then say so. And im also taking back the ill whoop any honda/acura's ass part as well. Okay!!!! People just want to complain about everything. You notice when i say autos suck but not when i excuse myself i lil bit later huh? DAMN

posted by  VMJYogi

they can b1tch at wutever they want. AUTO'S SUCK ASS.

posted by  jzxTT

come one people this is not big clever or gaining any freinds.

i dont agree with everything chris says but some of it is correct, and most likely is right relating to the experiances that chris has had.

Diffrent people have diffrent experiances and thats what were here for.

in the types of cars we have in the uk the majority arnt suited as he says to autos due to the smaller displacements.

Autos are good for highpower high torque aplications

Manuals are better for low weight, narrow power band and higher MPG aplications

i think even chris might agree to that genralisation.

Your not going to find a auto in a arctic becuase the power & torque band is relatively slim. If you have any sence then autos dot make sence for the majority of motorbikes due to weight and size.

If you have heavy traffic then auto is less taxing to drive, i think that every one will agree that they both have a place but for diffrent things.

posted by  cinqyg

Manual all the way

posted by  GreekWarrior

In one single post, you singlehandedly changed my perspective on automatics. I no longer hate my mom's minivan (well, okay, I still do), and taught me something I absolutly had no idea about (the shift kit).

This last part is UNBELIEVEABLY true.

:clap: :clap: :clap: :clap: :clap:

posted by  abless

the reasons why people like automatic and the reasons that people like auto are really never gonna be 100% understood. Just like no one knows why black people like menthol cigs or why white people like sniffing pantys. :laughing: . jp. But manual will always have more potential than automatic no matter what way you look at it. You cant drift in an automatic (correctly). Driving is a privallige so why not make it a little funner? plus auto's are weak. as far as shift kits....... there in the middle. :mrgreen:

posted by  jzxTT

I can understand that higher torque/power cars can be outfitted with advanced autos... but in the way of stock, I think manual rules. 'tis true that narrow power bands work better with clutch, and wider power bands work better with the advanced auto trannys. I like the control a clutch has. in my experience, I've seen how braking or slowing down with an auto will make your car drop a gear (usually), whereas in a clutch you can just keep gear and save yourself some money. I know you're thinking "it probably doesn't save that much money" but if you were to consider all the times this would/could happen, then you are going to be saving a considerable amount (unless of course you are not middle class like :probably: most of us)

posted by  VertigoPills

Auto because it's easier.

posted by  SUPRA'S ARE GAY

you should probably go with a can get better gas milage and you can also get beter start offs when as far as upgrading the outside before the inside in my opion is not a good idea because you dont want to be all show and no go if i were you i would go with a few major engine upgrades before doing the outside of the car. i would do somthing like turbo or super charging it and upgrading things like the crank and cam :thumbs:

posted by  THEcarexpert

You would seriously get a new crank? Unless your getting a stroker kit with pistons and rods a crank will not do anything.
Question: when you get a stroker kit that has a bigger bore and stroke, do you have to sleeve the cylinders to make it bigger? Is this expensive/?

posted by  CarEXPERT

manual is much more fun, not only that but i think you can get a lot more rpm out of it than you can auto. and if you havent used a stick before, its not that hard to learn. my first car was a stick and it only took me about half an hour to get used to it. but besides all that stick are much much more fun...but it all depends on what you like.... get what you think would be better for you

posted by  z4k9

Gonna say it again:

"How long have you been driving? if you've been driving a while you know that you don't even think about most shifts you make. If you're not thinking about them, then they aren't adding to the "fun" and you wouldn't miss them if you didn't have to shift during that time.

Do you drive around and every shift go, "look at me, I shifted! Look, I did it again. And again! Isn't this FUN?""

I've checked it out. You move the clutch pedal and shifter less than 5% of the time you're driving. MOST of that time, you don't even pay attention to the fact you're doing it, you just shift because the car wants you to, while you think about traffic around you, schoolwork, your next project, chores, etc. How is it possible that something that you only even NOTICE 2-3% of the time you're driving actually makes it "much more" fun? Fun while driving is about accelleration and cornering Gs. OCCASIONALLY, it's about executing that perfect heel-toe downshift while entering a corner. But I can guarantee you that at least 95% of the fun of driving happens whether you're moving a clutch pedal or not.

I've driven down a lot of fun, twisty roads in a manual equipped sports car (like my Fiat) and never had to shift at all. and yet somehow it was still fun. Could it be that the fun came from the cornering?

Control? You use the steering wheel, accellerator, and brake pedal vastly more than the clutch pedal. And you can drive a car in complete control in a car with no clutch pedal. I dare you to be in complete control in a car with no steering wheel or brake pedal...

Yes, I love a good manual shifter in a sports car, or any other small engine car. I also love a good shift kitted automatic in a performance car, or a smooth luxury automatic in a luxury car like my Jags. It's not very hard to have fun in any car. If you are incapable of it, then I suggest that you're not that much of a car enthusiast at all.

posted by  ChrisV

Not only do I agree to it, I've stated it myself many times.

Primarily because stock automatics are necessarily tuned for smooth shifts and are considered luxury items. In that state of tune, a smaller engine atttached to one will lose a LOT of it's character and ability. No doubt about it. And in trying to keep up with what a small engine needs, a stock automatic will be really schitzophrenic in personality, seemingly shifting randomly all the time trying to keep the engine in it's most efficient rev range, and never quite succeeding.

posted by  ChrisV

guess i should have been more specific if your going to get a bigger crank you usually should get the stroker kit with the pistons and rods, that is if you can afford.....if you get bigger pistons and bigger rods you usually have to bore and can be expensive it all depends on wether or not you do it yourself

posted by  THEcarexpert

:orglaugh: Mate you crack me up.

I haven't noticed this thread. Did someone get roasted because they posted that drag cars use auto transmissions? I hope the truth was revealed and apologies given.

posted by  Wally

The shifting part may not be more fun but, you can still accel faster and get more out of each gear, and that makes it more fun....

posted by  z4k9

ChrisV, so you mean that the bigger and more powerfull the engine, a automatic would be good for drag racing?
A small engine requires a manual right ChrisV to be the best at racing?

posted by  CarEXPERT

Only in small engine cars with stock transmissions. if you care about going faster, then you probably mod your engine. And if you can mod your engine, you can mod your trans. I could accellerate just as fast with the mildly modded automatics in my V8 cars, both for drag racing and slalom racing, while shifting faster, making power DURING the shifts, and never worrying about missing a gear.

Seriously, don't judge all automatic transmissions by the stock, smooth shifting unit in your mom's 4 cyl Camry... that would be like saying all 4 cyl vehicles are slow because my old stock 4 cylinder VW Rabbit and my wife's Hyundai Accent are slow.

posted by  ChrisV

generally, due to the fact that the smaller the engine, the higher it has to rev to make power, and automatics are gennerally not suitable for high rpm use (for example, teh modded AOD in my V8 RX7 was probably close to it's operational limits at teh 7500 rpm the 302 could rev to) Smaller engines also have narrower pwerbands, so they need more gear ratios to keep them in the optimum powerband, and automatics with enough gears are expensive and relatively heavy. Large engine cars don't need to rev as high, nor do they need as many gears to get the job done, so are not affected by the drawbacks teh automatic might have, and can take advantage of the performance advantages inherent in the automatic: faster shifts, mor power handling capability due to the design of the planetary gearsets, etc.

See a lot of what's happened in the sports car world in thinking manuals are more sporty is that in the early days, sports cars needed manuals to work right in road racing. Small engines had more power sucked out of them by the early autoamtics, which also overheated in racing use easier. But more importantly, small engine road race cars had VERY narrow powerbands. In order to keep the engine in the right powerband at any point on teh race track, the race builders needed to match the gearsets to the weight of the car, teh powerband of the engine, and the track itself (tight tracks needed more gears spaced closer together, longer tracks needed a bit wider spacing, and there were differneces for tracks with lots of elevation changes vs tracks that were fairly level). This meant that race teams would arrive at a track with multiple gearsets that they would swap out in practice to get the best combination. This is relatively easy to do in a manual gearbox using standard hypoid gearsets. But it's virtually impossible to do with the automatic box on site. Same for at-track repairs in an endurance race.

Often gearboxes were built by a few manufacturers (such as ZF, Getrag, Coletti, hewland, etc) and they could have one case and hundreds of gearsets available to match any concievable combination.

So, sports cars and road racing cars had manual transmissions for completly practical reasons. It had nothing to do with manuals being more fun, more sporty, or require more skill or give more control over the car in operation. But since sports cars had them, and sports cars were fun, the average person mistakenly equated the manual transmission as the REASON sports cars were sporty and fun.

Drag racers were concerned with getting to the end of the quarter mile quickest. Engine mods to make more power were and are very common. But the number of different kinds of cars isn't as great, only the level of prep. Torque rules them. And automatics handle more torque, and provide faster and more consistent shifts. With valve body mods to increase pressure, and higher friction bands and internal clutches, and torque converters that locked up or stalled properly, automatics transmitted as much power to the ground, shifted faster than you can manually, and allowed teh engine to continue to make power through the shift wihtout damaging the trans or risking a missed shift, as would happen powershifting a manual (where you hold the throttle to the floor while shifting as fast as you can). While heat buildup is still an issue, the cars aren't raced for hours at a stretch so overheting isn't as much of a problem. And multiple gearsets aren't an issue, as a drag strip is a straight stretch. Only differnce is traction and altitude. Any matching of gears and engine and car weight can easily be done with interchangeable final drive gears in the differntial, and fine tuned with tire diameter.

For STREET use, a mildly modded automatic is a perfect match to a powerful V6 or V8 engine, as it allows smooth commuting, and yet delivers full performance of the engine when you want it. In autocross, it meant one limb per control: steering wheel, shifter, brake, and throttle.

Like in this car:

posted by  ChrisV

What's up to everybody! I just wanted to ask those that say automatics are you think I just made a mistake by trading in my 06 Ford Focus ZX5 4dr hatchback (automatic) for an 02 Acura RSX Type S (manual)???

posted by  *MaRi*

I think its only a mistake if you hate driving stick. The RSX is a fairly easy car to drive around in manual.

posted by  MakeItRain

My opinion is that manual is ALWAYS better choice. You get control over shifting and you get that feeling that you tamed your car. That you and your car are friends and racing together (cliche I know). But it's definitively better. I'm only 14 but I know that feel when you put it in gear... Awesome! My brother will soon by a car for the block. Omega without plates... Just for enjoying in abandoned industrial zone...

posted by  ficho

Depends what you want to do with the car really, but on an asian import Id probably stick with the Manual cause of the tiny peaky motor.

If it was an american RWD v8 car id probably go automatic and put in a big nasty stall but thats just me.

posted by  Enthusiast

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