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The Future Of The Manual Transmission

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  • bpizzutibpizzuti Posts: 2,743
    Don't look at me, I've got an SSD. :shades:
  • habitat1habitat1 Posts: 4,282
    5000 rpm on our X5d
    7000 rpm on my TL 6-speed
    9000 rpm on my old Honda S2000 (it should have had a limiter that didn't allow the engine to drop BELOW 5000 rpm)
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    Yeah but we're weird like that. Shifty's right in that probably 0.1% know.
  • habitat1habitat1 Posts: 4,282
    ...this talk of rev limiters reminded me of a young college age softball teammate from about five years ago. I tore my right ACL in a game and he was driving me home in my car. I noticed he was upshifting at barely 2,000 rpm and lugging the engine to the point that I wasn't sure who was in more pain, me or my TL. He had us in 6th gear going barely 35 mph on Wisconsin Avenue. I kept telling him not to shift so soon, but he just couldn't help himself. Finally I got him to pull over, hobbled my way into the drivers seat, and took off, making sure every shift was at about 6,000 rpm to prove my point.

    Come to find out later that his only previous experience driving a manual transmission was earlier that spring with a diesel truck from his dad's landscaping company. He nearly blew it up by driving it 60 miles along I66 at 75 mph in 2nd gear with a full load of mulch. It didn't have a tachometer, rev limiter, or a good shifter gate and he thought he was in 4th. You would have thought the 120 decibel engine noise would have clued him in, but it wan't until the radiator started smoking that he figured it out.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    Ouch!

    All manuals should have a tach. Swinging that needle is half the fun!
  • andres3andres3 CAPosts: 5,341
    All vehicles should have a tach, including all automatics.

    Not having a tach sounds like Big 3 thinking and cost cutting.

    How else (if your deaf) will you know your in the wrong gear. Having said that, I love newer cars that have a digital read out of the gear you are in.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 45,021
    Given that I know 2 people who drove for some time after one of their wheels fell off, and didn't realize something was wrong, I'm not so sure a tachometer is going to register on their radar.

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  • ruking1ruking1 Posts: 14,898
    edited January 2013
    If there is an opinion poll, I would vote to include it as STANDARD equipment.

    For me anyway, Tacs are a nice option/standard equipment. I really do not look at it very much (in the real world). That is on A/T's and probably more on topic, on M/T's.
  • habitat1habitat1 Posts: 4,282
    ...a Datsun 1978 B210GX did not come with a tachometer as standard. But when I bought it, there was a mix up and the price included optional AM radio. The dealer said he could not lower the price, but agreed to swap out the radio for a tach. That swap saved me from a lot of mistakes when I was learning to master a manual transmission. And the Nakamichi/Fosgate sound system a fraternity brother installed a year later was just a tad bit better than the AM radio from Datsun.

    Porsche doesn't put the speedometer in the center of the gauge cluster, the tachometer gets top billing wiht the smaller speedometer on the left side. The way it should be.
  • fintailfintail Posts: 33,791
    I think some cars - automatic Corollas, etc, can get away without a tach.

    I watch it in the E55, always amused about how lazy it is at some speeds.
  • stickguystickguy Posts: 14,626
    I know. It just doesn't really matter, since I will never come close to it!

    the RDX has so much power, it could rev limit at 3K and still have plenty of performance. and the volvo likely won't be happy up that high.

    the integra, that I have to shift higher with the little engine, but with 167K on it, not sure I want to spend a lot of time buzzing it up to 6,700 RPM!

    2013 Acura RDX (wife's), 2007 Volvo S40 (daughter stole that one), and 2000 Acura TL (formerly son's, now mine again)

  • stickguystickguy Posts: 14,626
    I had a bunch of sticks (either owned or drove) before getting one with a tach. Volvo 144, beetle, 6 cyl duster, gremlin, hornet. And I think corolla?

    get real good shifting by ear, but pretty much all of those sounded like they were going to explode well before they actually were, so short shifting was the rule of thumb.

    2013 Acura RDX (wife's), 2007 Volvo S40 (daughter stole that one), and 2000 Acura TL (formerly son's, now mine again)

  • fintailfintail Posts: 33,791
    A lot of cars pre-1980 or so seem to lack them. Fintail lacks one of course - but it is made to be lugged, it seems, and also doesn't mind being revved, so I guess it is tolerant.

    I remember our 85 Tempo automatic had a tach, seems kind of silly. I want to say the 93 Taurus my mother had didn't have a tach, but prior cars have, including boring 4cyl automatic Camry.
  • kyfdxkyfdx Posts: 29,134
    Real stick-shift drivers don't need a tach.

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  • nippononlynippononly SF Bay AreaPosts: 12,692
    edited January 2013
    Amen to that! ;-)

    Was reading today about Nissan's new steer-by-wire, scheduled to go into the next-gen G sedan from what I understand. NO mechanical connection between the steering wheel and the front wheels, unless the computer senses that it has malfunctioned, and then a fail-safe mechanical connection pops in. Now I ask you: if the computer is malfunctioning, how is it going to sense anything? :confuse:

    Automatics and electric power steering have already sucked 3/4 of the fun out of driving, now they want to make it even worse. No computers doing the driving for me, it's stick shift or nothing.

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

  • nippononlynippononly SF Bay AreaPosts: 12,692
    Frankly, expecting a model to be clutch-pedal only almost sounds snobbish to me.

    Eh? The WRX is stick-only RIGHT NOW. As is the Focus ST, from what I understand. And of course the Civic SI, and a half dozen other models meant to be the most sporty variants in the line-up. There's just so much more involvement with the stick, it seems natural that they would sell the sports models only with the stick.

    And then of course, for the people in less of a hurry, there are all the models on the market that are automatic-only.... :shades:

    If I want a manual AWD SUV, my only remaining choices now are the Forester (and Outback) or the Porsche Cayenne, isn't that right? At least I still have two choices (assuming I have $60 grand to spend on a vehicle ;-)). Hang in there Porsche, don't drop the ball! The manual is probably doomed in the Subaru before too much longer. And how snobbish of all those other manufacturers to offer their models only with an automatic (at higher cost, naturally)!

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

  • cdnpinheadcdnpinhead Forest Lakes, AZPosts: 3,278
    Real stick-shift drivers don't need a tach.

    Really real stick-shift don't need a clutch either. Don't get me wrong, there is a third pedal, but it's only necessary to get the vehicle in motion from a dead stop.
  • habitat1habitat1 Posts: 4,282
    edited January 2013
    Real stick-shift drivers don't need a tach

    For me on the streets, probably.

    For the BMW and Porsche drivers I did hot laps with on a track, I think they would disagree. They are shifting at the razor's edge of redline, but before fuel cutoff. Which, if they hit fuel cutoff, would cost them a precious moment or two. i think they would throw out the speedometer, but not the tach.

    They also turn off every electronic intervention possible - ABS, stability control, etc. real drivers don't need (or want) any of those.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    Yeah, it is the small engines that need revs, except diesels.
  • kyfdxkyfdx Posts: 29,134
    Really real stick-shift don't need a clutch either.

    Exactly.... :)

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  • steverstever Viva Las CrucesPosts: 40,805
    When clutchless shifting my 5 speed Tercel around town back in the day, I found that I needed quite a bit of room for stashing my crutches and it was hard to toss them in the back from the front seat. You had to be careful to keep them away from the gear shift. :shades:

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  • fintailfintail Posts: 33,791
    I suppose a gas gauge isn't needed either - just track the odometer.

    I like to have as much info as possible - maybe that comes from experience with older cars, when you're just waiting for something to go awry.
  • eliaselias Posts: 1,923
    hab1, if possible please would you tell us compare/contrast how each of those vehicle's ECMs handles it when you hit the redline?

    the programming can be quite different in how the ECM stops redline from being exceeded...

    maybe do ECMS in automatic transmission vehicles handle redline different than in manual transmission vehicles?
  • bpizzutibpizzuti Posts: 2,743
    Real drivers don't need those fancy odometers or even steering wheels. TRUE driving involves a tiller connected directly to the wheels, for that real "road feel." Anything less is is merely a wimpy convenience for softies who are too lazy for REAL driving.

    :shades:
  • kyfdxkyfdx Posts: 29,134
    Don't get me wrong... nothing wrong with a tach... it's not a negative (like an automatic transmission...lol)..

    When I was learning to drive, it just wasn't seen often, except in them sporty furrin cars... Even once they were more common, we used to laugh when we saw them in automatic equipped models...

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  • srs_49srs_49 Posts: 1,394
    edited January 2013
    Come to find out later that his only previous experience driving a manual transmission was earlier that spring with a diesel truck from his dad's landscaping company

    That reminds of the story of how I came to own a 1968 Camaro Z-28. My dad was lending me the money for it, as I had just started on a work-study program. He came from a background driving 18-wheelers and 3-on-the-column manuals and didn't see any need to run the engine at anything over 2000 rpms, unless in third gear on the highway. Also, he saw no need for anything that could go much over 70 mph and took 15 secs to go 0 to 60.

    So off we went shopping for cars. I was ready to settle for a 327 Camaro with the 4-speed, but dad asked me what I wanted, so I blurted out "a Z-28" (sort of like Ralphie and the BB gun in A Christmas Story). So we test drove one. The Z-28's 302 engine of that era came with a radical cam profile that was optimized for the 4000 rpm to 6000 rpm range. It really lugged below 3000 rpms. So dad drove the car, using his standard upshift-at-2000 rpms technique, and declared "yeah, this car isn't too bad", meaning it's not too fast.

    So we bought it :) .
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 45,021
    edited January 2013
    "Real stick-shift drivers don't need a tach."

    No they just need periodic engine rebuilds... :P

    Perhaps in the old days, when we were driving huge displacement V8s with pistons the size of trash can lids that could rev to an oxygen-deprived 5200 rpm if they were lucky-----but now, with fast-revving turbo and SC engines, you can hit redline mighty quick. And with interference engines, you can stretch those piston rods just a little itty bit TOO MUCH....

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  • habitat1habitat1 Posts: 4,282
    hab1, if possible please would you tell us compare/contrast how each of those vehicle's ECMs handles it when you hit the redline?

    I've been pretty careful not to make a habit of hitting the redline, but with my TL there is a fuel cutoff that feels like the engine is going into a stall (but doesn't). Never found out if 9,200 rpm in the S2000 had the same feeling, I forced myself to give in and shift at 8,900. ;)

    As for the X5d, with an automatic transmission, I'm not sure we've gotten it much above 3,500 rpm. There are two shift modes, regular and sport, the latter of which can be shifted manually. But my wife isn't a drag racer around town and on the highway I've found the sport mode to still shift at under 3,500 to 4,000 rpm when I'm pushing it to pass or merge. The 425 ft lbs of torque starting at low rpm's give you more than enough acceleration long before redline.
  • habitat1habitat1 Posts: 4,282
    edited January 2013
    I suppose a gas gauge isn't needed either - just track the odometer.

    Pay no attention to the threat that real drivers don't need tachometers. They appear here to stay. The Americans with Disabilities Act has mandated them so as not to discriminate against the deaf (not to mention the dumb).

    Problem is, there are some that are lobbying to have ADA extended to include a ban against manual transmissions altogether. Arguing they are blatantly discriminatory against those afflicted with weak joints and chronic excuses. We wouldn't want one segment of the driving population to be able to have more fun than others, now would we? I thought Obama Care would have covered treatment for that affliction under universal coverage, but in spite of great advances in orthopedics, no one has found a cure for the second part.

    Tachometers safe? Yes. Manual transmissions? Maybe not.
  • bpizzutibpizzuti Posts: 2,743
    Problem is, there are some that are lobbying to have ADA extended to include a ban against manual transmissions altogether. Arguing they are blatantly discriminatory against those afflicted with weak joints and chronic excuses.

    Yeah, not to mention the people with bad left knees. Or perhaps no left knees. How dare those lazy people exist.

    I'd strongly suggest you edit your tone some.
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