Buying a new car is a huge decision to make, especially if you are unsure about whether you want one with a manual or automatic transmission. To make a wise choice it's important to know what the terms mean.
1. A manual transmission means that you have to learn to use a clutch to shift from one gear to another, thus utilizing both feet to drive the car.
2. Automatic transmission shifts to most gears without your aid, and without need of a third pedal, the clutch, to shift from one gear to another.
Here's some helpful information on the pros and cons of both manual and automatic transmission cars that will help you understand the differences between the two. Then you can decide which transmission type best suits your needs.
- Manuals are believed harder to drive than automatic, especially for and inexperienced or insecure driver.
- The manual transmission car is usually cheaper than automatic - the same model can cost you about a thousand bucks less.
- It also generally involves less expensive repairs, thus you save money on its maintenance as well.
- If you want the most power and control from your engine - go with a manual transmission: 99% of the time you will receive a noticeably better performance from a manual gearbox.
- If fuel economy is an issue a manual transmission is probably going to be the best choice for you.
- Automatic are usually considered easier to drive, they are reported to 'relieve traffic tension' and give you more freedom for paying attention not only to the gear shift.
- Learner drivers inevitably find synchronizing the clutch with the gears a challenge so many choose an automatic for its simplicity.
- An automatic auto transmission drinks more fuel because it needs extra power to work.
- It's also more complicated to mend and pricier to fix.
- There's also an inconvenience with the automatic gear shift: releasing it requires lots of practice to ensure a smooth start and gradual transition between gears once the vehicle is in motion.
- On the other hand automatic cars are safer, because there is no need to change gear so both hands can be kept on the steering wheel.
For those who can't quite decide which way to go may choose a semi-automatic transmission (SAT) (also known as a clutchless manual transmission, automated manual transmission) which doesn't change gears automatically, but rather facilitates the process by dispensing with the need to press a clutch pedal at the same time as changing gears.
To sum up all mentioned above, we can say that:
Manuals (MT) require more focus, more foot action, and ability to listen to your car as well as watch engine speed to know when to shift.
Automatics (AT) require a bit less focus, and may be better if you’re driving with loud people (perhaps crying babies), or in traffic with a great deal of stops and starts.
Making the choice between a manual or automatic is really a matter of personal preferences, price consideration, and comfort with driving styles.