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Vibe/ Matrix v. PT Cruiser v. ZX5 v. Protege5 v. Elantra GT v. Aerio SX

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Comments

  • nippononlynippononly SF Bay AreaPosts: 12,692
    had the problem that they gave up working before the car did, and they were VERY expensive to fix or replace. It is pretty uncommon for analog speedometers to quit working entirely, even if they get a little inaccurate as they age.

    As long as it keeps working, I have no issue with it. The "slash in the dash" that C&D referred to is what strikes me as odd looking. But I applaud the fact that it is different from everything else on the road - carmakers are way too conformist in their thinking.

    2013 Civic SI, 2009 Outback Sport 5-spd (stick)

  • I almost didn't buy my Aerio because of the digital dash and the looks. The deciding factor was my 11 year olds' comfort in the back seat. I didn't mind the looks too much, but I still don't think the bottom skirt does anything for it. On the other hand, I find the digital dash to be be the most convenient, functional and easiest to read of any car I have ever owned.
  • http://www.pontiac.com/pontiacjsp/vibe/access/supercharger.jsp?source=vibema&pagename=vibeacsprv


    You can now get a supercharger for the vibe and I assume toyota will be offering soon also. The low end low rpm torque will be welcome.

  • gintoginto Posts: 12
    hardoo,
    First off, let me say that I'm a longtime P5 owner (since June 2001), so my remarks may be biased. I still love this car!

    If you are really interested in keeping the car 7-10 years, I would say take the Mazda. The 323/Protege is a tried and true platform. I've owned several Chrysler products over the years, and although I started out with this same "keep forever" philosophy, I have, without fail, gotten rid of these cars "before their time". I doubt I'll own another in the near future. That said, I have heard that Chryslers have improved lately; and in Canada warranty coverage has improved to 7yr/100,000km (I don't know if this applies in the States).

    I also concur with the Hyundai Elantra GT supporters; the value is hard to beat. At the time I was buying, it was really the only competition for a hatch (no Honda Si, Matrix/Vibe, or MB-C230 yet; too many issues with Focus/Golf at that time). I just valued "fun to drive" more than "great value for the money"; YMMV.
  • I paid around $20K for a 2001 PT cruiser around 15 months ago. Wifes car

    I paid around $13,000 total (tax, license, etc.) for an Elantra hatchback, auto, moon/sun roof., leather seats. Here's my 2 cents.

    I like driving the elantra better...better visability, seat is more comfortable, smaller turning radius.

    It's easier to set the elantra up for cargo than the PT.

    The only things the PT has that the elantra doesn't have is a compass, ABS (i could have ordered this on a 2003), a cargo net in the trunk.

    I lke the cd/audio system in the elantra much better.

    I noticed in the PT that if I went on 2-3 hour trips my legs would get a cramp. I haven't gone on 2-3 hour trips in the elantra yet, but the seat feels nore confortable.

    The elantra gets better mileage.

    BTW, I looked at and drove the Suzuki Aerio before looking at the elantra. The Suzuki drove well and was a little noisier than the elantra. The interior of the elantra looks much nicer than the Aerio.

    My 2 cents!
  • icvciicvci Posts: 1,031
    Seriously. Especially Chisler. 95 Neon with nothing but grief.

    ME - "The glue around my front and rear windows is melting and running down the sides of my car."

    THEM - "Sir, that's just age. Your car is 7 years old, that happens."

    ME - "I defy you to find any car other than a Chrysler with this problem! Chrysler used faulty glue and acknowledged it in their TSB."

    THEM - "If you had brought it in before your warranty expired we wopuld have fixed it."

    ME - "It wasn't a problem!"

    THEM - "I'm sorry sir."

    Honda, Toyota, Mazda the big three.

    Ford, GM, Cry-sler the pig three.

    I'll take mileage, relaibility, and quality over patriotism any day of the week.

    PT and ZX3/ZX5...it's your money.
  • music287music287 Posts: 116
    I've been driving a 2000 Focus ZTS for about 3 yrs/55K. It's been great, averaging 33 mpg w/5 speed and, other than those pesky recalls, faultless. Now it's time to consider a new econo/commuter. The Jetta was tinny compared to the Focus, the Saturn is also "not enough car" for my taste. The PT Cruiser LE is just right. It's quieter, more substantial, roomier, better on rough roads and more useful like a mini-minivan. Mileage should be close to 30 mpg w/5 speed and there's a $2500 rebate, even with ordered cars. The warranty is better than VW's, too. My wife even likes it. (She suggested the car, btw.)
    The LE w/abs, traction and heated leather seats (a must) is about $20K including rebate, tax and delivery. My dealer is taking $200 over the total invoice.

    I'm buying one right now!

    Jay
  • boggseboggse Posts: 1,048
    Wait until you can get the Turbo Engine! :)
  • nippononlynippononly SF Bay AreaPosts: 12,692
    it comes out in a couple of months...in a month, you will think the base engine is slow.

    2013 Civic SI, 2009 Outback Sport 5-spd (stick)

  • lngtonge18lngtonge18 Posts: 2,228
    The turbo is already available in the PT. It has been since about November.
  • nippononlynippononly SF Bay AreaPosts: 12,692
    it will soon be available without waiting lists and mark-ups, then?...

    2013 Civic SI, 2009 Outback Sport 5-spd (stick)

  • jbolltjbollt Posts: 734
    ...is available now with discounts AND rebates. It varies by what region of the country you are in.
  • boggseboggse Posts: 1,048
    The Turbo that is.
  • HankrHankr Posts: 100
    I drive an Aerio and just rented an Elantra for 5 days. Overall, the Elantra impressed me, though not to the point where I'd choose one over the Aerio.

    The Elantra design felt "old-school", low seating and more-difficult ingress / egress. Maybe its just me getting old, but I prefer the more-upright, taller Aerio design. Aerio just felt less confining.

    Elantra engine was smooth and acceptably quiet, but its lower torque was noticable relative to Aerio. Aerio just has more oomph (gently) accelerating from 30-35 MPH in high gear... more tugging power. Elantra required frequent downshifts.

    Elantra interior materials (plastics and upholstery) a tad nicer, Aerio switchgear tactile feel and ergonomics a tad better. Aerio stereo notably better.

    I discounted Elantra in my purchase decision due to lackluster crash tests. If Hyundai improves in that area, they'll be right there with all the segment's competition.
  • dmc1648dmc1648 Posts: 4
    I bought an Aerio SX one month ago this upcoming Saturday. I was looking to go in a very different direction from my 97 Sebring Convertible. I spent several weeks researching and test driving sporty hatchbacks. My top choice was the Focus SVT. I had a strong desire to stay under $20K though and I couldn't find an SVT in that price range within 700 miles of me. The rest of my choices in order based on the whole package and price were the Aerio SX, Focus ZX5, Vibe, Matrix (with the 180HP versions top choice), Pro5, Elantra GT.

    I'm loving the Aerio. I think it handles great, is peppy, and is extremely roomy. It lacks convenient driver area small storage, but is otherwise very clever in its use of space. It has an amazing array of features for the price. My biggest complaint is that it doesn't offer a moonroof or sunroof. I plan to get one aftermarket. After driving a convertible for a few years, it's hard to adjust to not having the sun on my head.
  • gkxpgkxp Posts: 12
    I have owned 41 cars thus far. In this class of cars I have owned a Hyundai Elantra, Chevy Prizm, Honda Civic, Chevy Cavalier, Ford Escort, Honda Insight, Dodge Neon, etc. I didn't think it would be at first, but after driving it, I believe the Aerio is the best in this class hands-down.

    First of all, I have read people "complaining" about the interior of the car. What?? The seats are velour black and ultra firm/supportive and the entirely black interior is excellent. Very Euro and nice to do away with the vanilla (plain, boring) gray and beige interiors. My first thought in this interior was very Germanic (almost exactly like VW Golf). Even the assist handles in the headliner retract very slowly and there is a center rear retractable headrest like VW, Mercedes, BMW and Audi (obvious Germanic Inspiration). There is 104.7 Cu. Ft. of room (more than Full-Size Chevy Impala) and this really shows in the ultra comfortable seating all around and in the back (even for me, I am 6'1"). The CD Player, while no Rockford Fosgate, is very good for stock equipment.

    Second, the powertrain. I have a 2003 with the 145HP, 136T engine and I believe it to be faster than the next fastest 2003 Hyundai Elantra I traded in for this. I'm sure the Cavalier with the new EcoTec (140HP/150T) is also fast, as is the Nissan Sentra's 2.5L SER engine, but the Suzuki is definitely near the top of the heap in this class with that motor. The trans is very responsive and doesn't seem to "hunt" for the right gear as much as my Elantra did and is far better than the Neon, Escort and other compacts I've had.

    Third, my favorite, the digital dash. I have read that this is very 80's and Nintendo-like. I don't get that, does that mean that standard dial gauges are pre-historic Henry Ford-Era?? Why do all the new HIGHEST-TECH Hybrid Cars like the Insight and Prius sport digital dashes then?? Having owned an Insight, the dash on this Suzuki is nearly identical and I wouldn't doubt that Honda and Suzuki may get these from the same source. This dash set-up is the simply the best in class.

    Finally, The appearance of the exterior is speculative and we all have our opinions of all cars. While appearing tall, I like the easy entry/exit and high small SUV-like seating position and of course the cavernous amount of interior room the high stance provides. The ride is very smooth and controlled, I would say best in class tied with the Corolla. Of course, this means the handling suffers a bit due to the 14/15 inch rims. IF ride quality would not be affected, I would suggest Suzuki up the ante to 16" wheels.

    The timing chain is a maintenance plus as is the 7 year/100000 Mile FULLY TRANSFERRABLE (not like Hyundai/Kia Warranties) Powertrain Warranty.

    I would just suggest to anyone shopping the class to just take my suggestion and check out these cars in this topic and the others in the class and check out the Aerio last. I'm sure some will be very impressed with this obscure brand they may have never thought of, but that is why Suzuki has to work harder than the others and make a better car. Feel free to write me if you have questions.
  • baggs32baggs32 Posts: 3,213
    "I have read that this is very 80's and Nintendo-like. I don't get that, does that mean that standard dial gauges are pre-historic Henry Ford-Era?? Why do all the new HIGHEST-TECH Hybrid Cars like the Insight and Prius sport digital dashes then??"

    My Dad's 87 Taurus had an all digital dash. That might be where they're coming from with the 80's reference.

    I think the Caprice had it back then too. So it's not exactly "new" or "high tech".
  • gkxpgkxp Posts: 12
    I didn't know the Taurus ever came with the digital dash. I had a Caprice and that definitely did come with a digital dash. I know 80's technology is not new. Aren't dial gauges found in most cars from like the 1930's or something? So an advance of 50 or so years in technology seems somewhat "HIGH TECH" to me. The only more advance info set-up would probably be GM's HUD (Heads Up Display), I believe that came out in the 90's.
  • boggseboggse Posts: 1,048
    The reason that many people prefer analog gauges is that they not only communicate the current reading, but also the rate of change.

    For example: I am accelerating from 0-60. A digital speedometer will tell me how fast I am going at a given moment, but I don't have a visual cue to tell me how quickly my velocity is increasing. With an analog gauge, how fast the needle moves communicates to me the rate of acceleration.

    I'm not sure whether the Taurus or Caprice ever came with digital gauges, but I do recall my father's '82 Lincoln Town Car having one, as well as a trip computer which puts everything I have seen since to shame. The downside was he never learned to use it. I had to program it for him (I was 9 years old).
  • lngtonge18lngtonge18 Posts: 2,228
    I think the complaints about the interior has to do with the quality of the materials and the unusual styling, not the colors. The color combination of the interior is nice and European, but the quality of the materials suck (I definitely am not reminded of any european car when I touch or look at anything inside the Aerio). None of the plastic used is soft to the touch and the fabric is a major lint catcher and shocks you everytime you get out of the car. The door handles are rough to the touch as is the thin steering wheel rim, the dash is hard as a rock and sounds hollow if you tap it, the cheap fabric on the door panel began showing wear after only 5k miles, and the hard door panel was very uncomfortable to rest your arm on. The lack of storage is annoying and closing the doors emits a cheap, tinny sound. Both front door panels buzzed loudly on my car and I also encountered a loud dash rattle a few times. To say I was disappointed in the interior quality of my Aerio would be an understatement. On the plus side, the front and rear seats are extremely comfortable, visibility is good, the stereo has good sound, and the interior is very roomy. Otherwise, the Aerio is seriously lacking compared to other cars in the same class.

    By the way, the 145 horse engine is very unrefined, coarse, and loud. It is nowhere near the top of the class in power either. The Corolla, Neon, and Elantra all outaccelerate it and the 120 hp Lancer matches it (all cars had a manual tranny). The car really should be faster then what it is. It was spunky off the line but lost power at higher revs and felt slow on the highway. Not to mention the obnoxiously loud wind noise and the suspension that was sometimes harsh (best in class ride? you are kidding right??). Fuel economy on the highway was a disappointment as well. 29 mpg is the best I ever saw in my car after 9600 miles.

    Anyway, that's my take on this car. I think it's a bad idea to look at all other cars before the Aerio, because that would maximize its major shortcomings and really make it look bad. The Aerio is a good car if all you want is a very roomy well equipped inexpensive car, but there are much better choices out there for little to no extra money. I was very happy to get rid of my Aerio.
  • gkxpgkxp Posts: 12
    I guess that would be your opinion on this then. Again, I have OWNED a majority of the cars in this class and have DRIVEN everything else, so I come from a different position on this. I had a 2003 Elantra and look up the horsepower in their brochure, for mine there was no rating because Hyundai had overestimated the 140HP they claimed the 2.0L Motor produced and that actually it was closer to 130HP (I thought 133 to be exact or 12 less than Aerio). Maybe the turbo Neon (at $20K) outaccelarates it, but not the 132HP standard Neon (again, I had a previous generation lighter-weight Neon with the DOHC 150HP motor) and what about Dodge's future reliability? Everytime they try to pit a Viper against other supercars in its class, it has some type of failure that causes it to break down and is unable to compete. My Prizm had 125HP, I believe the new Corolla has that same VVT-i Engine in it and is good for 125HP also, making it 20HP shy of the Aerio. I had thought the basic Lancer was one of the slowest cars in this class due to a heavy curb weight and low HP (I will check this out) unless you are pitting the $25K Lancer Evolution to the Aerio. Maybe you are comparing other manual transmission cars to the Aerio (SX Wagon does 0-60 in 8.3 seconds with manual) with an automatic and this could explain why you think it is slower.

    I agree the interior materials are not to the exact degree of quality as VW, but the Aerio is not $20000 as is the Golf. And, I think the material quality comes very close. I would disagree about the seats though, the velour on the Aerio seems to me to be identical to Golf's.

    The ride to me is as good as the softly sprung Corolla. The Chicago area uses salt for winter and with the vast temp changes, there are potholes all over. The Aerio seems well controlled and stable on rough surfaces as does the Corolla. These 2 seem to be built for ride as opposed to the Focus and Protege, built for mini-BMW-like handling.
  • HankrHankr Posts: 100
    I drive an Aerio and am quite pleased.

    The interior design and materials are average... below Civic, Corolla, Protoge... above Elantra, Neon, PT (base), Focus. Aerio's seat design and comfort are a notable high-point, as is the tactile feel of the switchgear. Interior storage and hard-plastics are its low points.

    The digital dash is purely subjective... it took me 2 or 3 days to get used to it and now I like it just fine. I sure don't need an analog dial to tell me whether I am accelerating or decelerating. Clock, outside temp guage (nice feature) and stereo all easy to see and access.

    On the road, I'd again call it average. It rolls more than most, but that is (to me) an acceptable price to pay for the higher seating hip point and tall roof that make ingress and egress so easy. Getting into and out of Neons, Elantras and Protoges is a hassle... they're LOW. I could not live with themn on a daily basis.

    Last is price... if one equips all these cars at a high level and equally (AC, PW, Remote Keyless, Cruise, CD, Power Mirrors, etc.), then they fall generally into 3 price levels (Real-world prices after rebates)...
    High End ($16K): Golf, Civic, Corolla / Matrix, PT Cruiser
    Mid Price ($14K): Protoge, Sentra
    Low End ($12K): Aerio, Focus, Cavalier, Elantra, Neon.

    Given price is so important in this segment, I submit that the Aerio is the best buy. Focus may be there too, if one believes (as I do) that Ford has gotten the bugs out of a basically very good car.
  • icvciicvci Posts: 1,031
    the Aerio is not $20000 as is the Golf

    Edmunds TMV for a new Golf is $15,665.

    I'm glad you like your Aerio. But given a choice 100 times, I'll take my Protege5 everytime. Only the P5 will make you smile when you drive.
  • boggseboggse Posts: 1,048
    "I sure don't need an analog dial to tell me whether I am accelerating or decelerating."

    Sounds like the Aerio is perfect for you then. Personally, I will stick with the analog gauges in my Protege5 and Miata.
  • nippononlynippononly SF Bay AreaPosts: 12,692
    for corolla LEs that have all the items listed above except cruise is $14,8 right now. Add the cruise at $250 and you have a $15K car. Plus, that is for an auto, for manual subtract $800.

    I would say there are really two groups, for the cars actually listed in the header of this thread. Suzuki and Hyundai are the $12K cars, with Hyundai at a large power deficit (but just redesigned) and the others around $15K, with PT and Matrix slightly more. All of these are pretty inexpensive. I think, having driven many of them and bought the Matrix, that you get what you pay for in the driving experience of the Suzuki and the Hyundai, but as far as interiors I would say it is a wash - they are all pretty good, but all firmly planted in the economy class.

    2013 Civic SI, 2009 Outback Sport 5-spd (stick)

  • lngtonge18lngtonge18 Posts: 2,228
    I guess you need to pay closer attention to the numbers. The Corolla has 130 hp and the Elantra has 135. The Aerio GS 5 speed was just tested by Car and Driver and posted a 0-60 time of only 8.8 seconds, which was slower than the Neon, Corolla, and Elantra. The supposedly underpowered Lancer was tested at 9.1 seconds in that same test and 8.9 seconds in another one. Edmunds did a comparison test of small wagons and the Aerio SX 5 speed posted 9.1 sec from 0-60 while the Matrix did it in 9.0, despite weighing exactly the same and having a smaller engine with 11 less hp and 10 less lb ft of torque. In other words, the Aerio is nowhere near as fast as it should be. Either the gearing is too tall or the slow to rev nature of the engine and the lack of high-rpm power limits its performance potential. Having the highest hp rating is all fine and dandy, but if it doesn't have the performance numbers to back it up (as in the Aerio's case), than it means nothing.

    As for the comparison with the Golf, you can buy one for 15,600 as someone posted above (with standard side and head airbags, power everything, alarm, and ABS!; a longer bumper-to-bumper warranty as well). I paid 15,559 for my Aerio and got much lower material quality and less standard safety features in the process. The current big rebates on the Aerio help the value equation but when you look at the competitors, it offers nothing but more room for the same price.

    I'm curious why you traded in you Elantra? Did you have problems with it or just wanted more room? How much of a bath did you take when trading it? The reason I ask is I think it's funny how you got rid of your 03 Elantra for an 03 Aerio and I got rid of my 03 Aerio for an 03 Tiburon. I also noticed that ramblin_mo just traded his 03 Aerio SX for an 03 Elantra. I find it interesting that there is so much cross-shopping between these two brands.
  • ramblin_moramblin_mo Posts: 29
    Traded 03 Aerio SX, for Elantra
    Why?
    Gut wrenching jolts at highway speed hitting expansion strips, potholes, bumps.
    Skittish ride, blowing around in high wind.
    Fabric was worn by diver window after 3 months. This was where I uncomfortably rested my arm.

    Static shocks on exiting. Black fabric shows dirt badly seconds after cleaning. Cleaning bug goo off the huge front bumper every two days.

    Overdrive lock out on automatic transmission until the engine reaches operating temp. This really was annoying. The salesman said I should bring it in for service. He thought it was defective and not standard feature.

    Wife hated the Aerio, it was my commuter car so I didn't care what she thought. Wish I had listened to her! We both like the ride and the look of the Elantra.

    I think the Aerio will be a very reliable car. I still like the radical look. The ride made me get rid of it.
  • gkxpgkxp Posts: 12
    The Protege 5 is an excellent car. The handling is class-dominating (along with the Focus). The exterior styling is fantastic also. My only complaint with it and Focus, Corolla, Civic and VW Golf (base), Sentra (base), Neon, Elantra, Matrix/Vibe (base) and Lancer is "WHERE'S THE BEEF?". Really 115-135HP is OK but for the class, I prefer the 145HP of my Aerio and the 165HP of the Sentra SER or the 150HP of the PT Cruiser (even though the latter 2 cost more). Most of these cars have strong points like the Protege and its handling or the Civic and its fuel economy, but before all else (except build quality of course), I would want power first and then build in handling, ride quality, comfort, etc.

    Being an American, I really don't need (or want) to row gears because gas here is only $1.50 a gallon, so all my 0-60 observations are based on AUTOMATIC TRANS Cars (as most Americans drive) not manual trans cars like most people in gas-expensive/third world nations seem to drive. Please remember to compare manual to manual and AT to AT when comparing 0-60 times (as C/D may not). Lancer is probably 9.1 to 60, with 5-speed trans VS 9.3 to 60 with AT for the Aerio. I know it is sometimes hard to find AT times, I have subscribed and read almost every article in Car and Driver and Motor Trend every month for about 10 years now, as most of the time they seem to test and post manual trans times in the back of the mag and for comparisions (sometimes against AT-equipped cars).

    I know the Focus SVT, Lancer Evolution, Subaru WRX, Neon SRT-4, VW Golf GTI/Jetta Turbo/V-6, are also all in this class and are all great cars, but are so costly ($20,000+), why wouldn't you just buy an Altima 3.5L V-6, GTP, Accord EX V-6 or comparable? Whereas, in this class, my Aerio S was only $11500 (without $500 owner loyalty coupon I had for previously owning a Grand Vitara) and offers a great car with a bit of power at 145HP.

    So I can buy a Golf for $16K, about $5K more than I paid for my Aerio for 30 less HP. While I admit that blue gauges are nice and so is the Golf's multi-adjustable seat, these features along with the softer-to-touch plastics are not worth $5000 to me. Isn't the Golf still made in Brazil or has production moved back to Mexico? Either way, I would also think that the Suzuki being made in Japan suggests better construction/reliability. If it were "made in Germany" I could come closer to justifying that $5000 price gap.

    I traded my Elantra because, it seemed very flimsy after the 20K miles I put on it. It suffered from loud wind noise (and other creaks/rattles all the time) at highway speeds. The fabric on the driver armrest was coming off. The motor was also very noisy at idle (even with timing belt?) despite oil changes every 3K. Also, after awhile of driving it, I really got sick of the plain gray interior with the peach and pinkish colors blended into the seat fabric too. It was definitely slower when new and at 20K than my brand new (and not broken in yet) Aerio S (both had AT). Also, I checked at Hyundai's website and I guess they have now settled on 135HP as the "official" horsepower, down from the 140HP they had claimed prior (and 10 less than 145HP in the Aerio). One thing that was far better though than Hyundai had advertised was the gas mileage. With the Elantra, I averaged a Civic/Corolla-like 32MPG AVERAGE! This was quite a pleasant surprise, but not enough to get me to want to keep the car. Not to bash Hyundai, I did have a 2.5L V-6 Sonata (and another less pleasant new 4 cylinder Sonata) before that I really loved and had very few complaints about. The Tiburon seemed upscale to the Elantra to me when I sat in it, but I didn't drive one yet. I didn't like the fact that there are no side moldings/protection (against door dings) on it and several other new coupes on the market.

    Oh well, this is just my opinion for this compact class, I enjoy reading all of yours and we all have to agree on one thing, EVERY one of these cars is vastly better than the best compact cars any company put out in the eighties and most of the nineties (although I miss my '99 DOHC 150HP AT Neon). You have to love the fierce competition going on with the automakers these days.
  • fndlyfmrflyrfndlyfmrflyr Posts: 668
    $1.50 per gallon? Wow, wish it was that price around here. A couple of months ago it was almost $2.40 around here. Down to about $1.90 now.

    Still, with heavy traffic an automatic transmission makes sense, even with high fuel prices.
  • gkxpgkxp Posts: 12
    Yes, now in the Metro Chicago Area, gas is around $1.50 a gallon area for regular at premium stations (BP, Mobil, Shell), but it is a little more downtown. That $2.40 (now $1.90) must be in California, I thought I had heard about ultra-high prices there. The highest I remember 87 octane costing here ever was a few years ago, $2.20 or so a gallon and this was when I had a Camaro Z28 that required premium (93 octane) at $2.40/$2.50 a gallon!

    I agree that a big part of my decision to drive AT-equipped cars is the rush hour traffic and traffic in general. Even though I have owned stick cars before (Insight, S10), I found stick to be horrible to drive in the metro area. I may own a manual if I lived in a very desolate (rural) place and never needed to drive in dense traffic.
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