Howdy, Stranger!

It looks like you're new here. If you want to get involved, click one of these buttons!





The Future Of The Manual Transmission

1472473475477478502

Comments

  • bpizzutibpizzuti Posts: 2,743
    Define "real driver engagement."
  • Stever@EdmundsStever@Edmunds YooperlandPosts: 38,948
    My biggest issue is that the manuals that are left are going to six speeds and I really got used to and liked a 5 speed.

    My old '82 Tercel was "peppy" but certainly no sports car. Really enjoyed the MT in that little car.
  • bpizzutibpizzuti Posts: 2,743
    One of the MT's problems is the increasing number of speeds. It's rough trying to squeeze them into a shift pattern reasonably, and it becomes a lot easier to miss shifts. People miss shifts with a 6+R, can you imagine an 8+R? 10+R?

    Whereas paddles or a +/- gate don't have that problem. ;)
  • habitat1habitat1 Posts: 4,282
    edited January 2013
    Define "real driver engagement."

    If I have to define it, you probably don't get it. But sucker that I am, I'll try anyway.

    (1) You use your left foot, coordinated with your right hand, instead of your thumbs.

    (2) You get to feather the clutch, or hold it in neutral, blip it more or less than the computer would, or do whatever the heck YOU want. Try that with just your thumbs.

    (3) You get to make mistakes and know that it's YOU that missed the shift. And try to do better the next time. Isn't that why we all golf??

    The manual's advantages of sportiness and efficiency have been overshadowed by the DCT and CVT respectively.

    OK your turn. Please define "sportiness"? Because as best I can tell, you'd rather be watching ESPN in the comfort your living room than lacing up some metal cleats and sliding into second head first yourself. I'm not trying to be sarcastic (OK, maybe a little). But it's just that I keep hearing about how the new technology is "better" because it requires us to do less to et the same - or sometimes better - results. I don't want to do less, when it comes to rowing my own gears.

    BTW, don't take any of this personally. You should see the crap I give my buddies who insist on buying a new $500 titanium driver every year that looks about the size of a VW Beetle, brag about how much better it is than last year's model, and then cry like little babies when I tell them we are playing our match from the 7,200 yard tips. They are willing to pay $400 to play Pinehurst #2 and then complain that they will lose more balls if forced to play the whole course.

    What they really need is more balls in their pants.
  • bpizzutibpizzuti Posts: 2,743
    But sucker that I am, I'll try anyway.

    (1) You use your left foot, coordinated with your right hand, instead of your thumbs.

    (2) You get to feather the clutch, or hold it in neutral or do whatever the heck YOU want. Try that with just your thumbs.


    So one must use a clutch pedal to truly feel "driver engagement," which is defined as "having a clutch pedal." Well, you said "sucker," not me. :shades: That's called a "circular argument" and it generally translates to "epic fail."

    "Sportiness" is a combination of power and responsiveness in handling, acceleration, and braking. A clutch pedal has nothing to do with it.

    New technology doesn't "require us to do less." It frees us up to do MORE. I'm not trying to hit a sliver of a shift gate, I'm concentrating on my tail-slide, I'm focusing on my steering, and dodging that jerk in the left lane hypermiling in the Prius by the skin of his bumper because I can concentrate less on SHIFTING and more on DRIVING.
  • I think habitat's point was that the car is doing more things FOR you---and your argument is that yes, that's true, and that allows me to concentrate on other things.

    However, the flaw I see in that rather neat rebuttal is that a clutch pedal doesn't really prevent you from doing the other things, it just requires more effort.

    I don't see "involvement" and "making things easier" as compatible. Some might argue that they are polar opposites.

    ON THE OTHER HAND...ahem....one could argue that driving say a 3-pedal Model T is not more "driver involvement", but rather just a pain in the butt. :P

    Have you ever considered that there is a reason why motorcycles are not all automatics, and the ones that are, are wimpy little thingies?
  • bpizzutibpizzuti Posts: 2,743
    edited January 2013
    However, the flaw I see in that rather neat rebuttal is that a clutch pedal doesn't really prevent you from doing the other things, it just requires more effort.

    ON THE OTHER HAND...ahem....one could argue that driving say a 3-pedal Model T is not more "driver involvement", but rather just a pain in the butt.


    Exactly. And can you imagine the "purists" of the time, when the Motel T's successors came out? WHEEL brakes? We never needed those before! It'll decrease driver involvement!

    And then there were padded dashes. And then automatic transmissions. And rack and pinion steering. Disc brakes. Synchromesh! Front wheel drive. Power steering. ABS. All-wheel-drive. Think having manual-locking hubs increased driver involvement?

    Next up is some further transmission advances. Like every advance before it there will be the "purists" that feel they are obligated to preserve the past way of doing things as the only proper way. But eventually most of the market just leaves them behind.

    CVTs may take a shot at replacing slushboxes, but slushboxes are popular in the US, whereas CVTs are popular in Asia, and DCTs are popular in Europe. Eventually DCTs will all but replace manual transmissions in all but a few specialized applications. That's just progress.

    Anyone claiming "driver involvement" can get back to me after they've removed the power steering, power brakes, fuel injectors, headlights, and windshield wiper motors from their car. Oh, and the synchromesh from their manual transmission....can't have any of that advanced technology muddying up the "driver involvement" after all. :shades:
  • kyfdx@Edmundskyfdx@Edmunds Posts: 25,881
    Every time I get in a car with paddle shifters, whether it's my wife's auto manual Infiniti or my friend's GT-R with dual-clutch thingy, I find myself letting it shift for itself after about five minutes.. Paddle shifting doesn't keep my attention, and if it will shift on it's own, then it's an automatic in my book..

    I am getting used to six gears, now, but can't imagine going to seven, like the Porsche. (Though, would be willing to try). ;)

    Moderator - Prices Paid, Lease Questions, SUVs

  • hpmctorquehpmctorque Posts: 4,118
    The new Corvette also has a 7-speed manual. I'd choose the automatic, especially with all that torque.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    Paddles, how many speeds again?
  • kyfdx@Edmundskyfdx@Edmunds Posts: 25,881
    Yeah, I drove a Z06 with 6-speed, and figured I could get by with just 2nd and 5th.

    Moderator - Prices Paid, Lease Questions, SUVs

  • habitat1habitat1 Posts: 4,282
    Anyone claiming "driver involvement" can get back to me after they've removed the power steering, power brakes, fuel injectors, headlights, and windshield wiper motors from their car. Oh, and the synchromesh from their manual transmission....can't have any of that advanced technology muddying up the "driver involvement" after all.

    Actually, I think there are a few of those purists that wil be showing up at Pebble Beach later this year to have a road rally race with some nice vintage sports cars. Caught something on the History Channel or whatever network airs "Chasing Classic Cars". The idea was that there shouldn't be a garage queen "winner" that can't actually be driven the way it was designed.

    Look, you can go to the extreme of saying that I need to go out and buy a horse and buggy with wooden wheels and a whip in order to make any claim of preferring driver involvement. And I can tell you that you should get a better day job so you can just hire a chauffeur to carry you and your thumbs in the back seat of a limousine. My 28 year old neighbor that has a beautifully restored 1974 911S that doesn't have power anything, but puts 230 hp to the rear wheels of its 1,900 pound curb weight and never came in worse than 1st place in 10 years of vintage racing at Summit Point would call us both spoiled wimps for debating sportiness and engagement. If he wasn't so damn polite, that is.

    The fact is that I have continued to drive a stick because there is an element of involvement and feedback that I enjoy. And yes, I probably am not very polite to those that promulgate the notion pressing buttons or flipping paddles on a PDK steering wheel is just as engaging. It's easier, yes. It can be more fuel efficient, yes. It can produce faster 0-60 times and even Nurburgring laps, yes. But more engaging, no. If you don't agree, then let's agree to disagree.
  • Stever@EdmundsStever@Edmunds YooperlandPosts: 38,948
    edited January 2013
    Yeah, I drove a Z06 with 6-speed, and figured I could get by with just 2nd and 5th.

    I could just about get by with 1st and reverse in the newest one. :shades:

    image
  • bpizzutibpizzuti Posts: 2,743
    We're going to have to agree to disagree, because there's no WAY you can tell me that a nice Mazda3 with a Mazda-designed automatic transmission is not an enjoyable and involving drive, whether or not you might find it "more" involving with a stick (I personally would be annoyed with it the first time I got stuck in traffic with it).

    My next purchase is looking like a 2014 Forester XT, which basically translates to a lifted, somewhat heaver WRX (always wanted a WRX but I hoped Subaru would source a DCT). If I want the Forester XT I have to accept that it comes with a CVT, though luckily they programmed in some simulated gears and manual shifting modes, which is an improvement.

    Anything I buy is my single car and is a daily driver on a 55 mile commute on a highway that sometimes gets very VERY clogged. I have to factor that into any car purchase, and a clutch is going to be a ROYAL pain in that traffic.

    Let me know how involving that horse and buggy is. You know, I figure when they introduced steering wheels, someone complained that they reduced driver involvement compared to the tiller. :shades:
  • kyfdx@Edmundskyfdx@Edmunds Posts: 25,881
    If I want the Forester XT I have to accept that it comes with a CVT

    That is a travesty..... :(

    Moderator - Prices Paid, Lease Questions, SUVs

  • bpizzutibpizzuti Posts: 2,743
    If I want the Forester XT I have to accept that it comes with a CVT

    That is a travesty.....


    They should really offer it with a 6-speed manual option, but apparently the take-rate is pretty low. And frankly their standard is a 5-speed manual: the only 6 speed they have is off of the STI, and comes with the driver-controlled differential. Which they probably don't want to put into the Forester. That might be what's taking the next WRX so long too, come to think of it: the CVT might be the only tranny ready for it yet, and a WRX absolutely should not be offered in CVT-only, there should be a manual tranny option.

    And as I mentioned, I'd still buy the CVT. It's got a sport program that simulates a 6 speed automatic (with manual shift capability) and a sport sharp program that simulates an 8 speed automatic (again with manual shift). A CVT frankly can shift even faster than a DCT if programmed right. Big "if" of course, but the Impreza shifts impressively fast with it's CVT in manual mode.

    PS - the 6 speed in the BRX is Lexus/Toyota derived, and not AWD ready.
  • ruking1ruking1 Posts: 14,487
    ..."be aware that this is NOT a good way to try to figure out automatic vs. manual inventories of new vehicles."....

    I have not used cars .com in ANY references to "try to figure out automatic vs. manual inventories of new vehicles". What made you even think I was unawares? ;) :shades:
  • MrShift@EdmundsMrShift@Edmunds Posts: 43,643
    edited January 2013
    "Anyone claiming "driver involvement" can get back to me after they've removed the power steering, power brakes, fuel injectors, headlights, and windshield wiper motors from their car. Oh, and the synchromesh from their manual transmission....can't have any of that advanced technology muddying up the "driver involvement" after all"

    You have actually just described my 1966 MGB! :P

    I'd be very happy in a car without power anything, but I'd like headlight and wipers please--- I mean, those were around in 1915, so hardly advanced technology.

    If I could somehow remove all those things from my MINI COOPER I'd be very happy. My level of "driver involvement" goes all the way down to SMELL and NOISE.

    But yeah, I need a heater, lights, horn, wipers. In the San Francisco Bay Area, AC isn't necessary either, and with a small light car, drum brakes are just fine.

    But I'm not pooh-poohing hi-tech automatics or manumatics or DSGs or whatever.....they certainly have a place, like for postal delivery trucks for instance. :P
  • bpizzutibpizzuti Posts: 2,743
    Oh come on, drum brakes? Real men don't need brakes, they just completely destroy that driver involvement. :shades:

    Heater, lights, an you call yourself a driving enthusiast! Why don't you just tack a US Postal Service sign to your ride too? ;)
  • ruking1ruking1 Posts: 14,487
    edited January 2013
    I have one vehicle with (rear)"drum" brakes. Evidently what you say is true for women also. Three women put the majority of the miles on this. The mechanics laugh when they checked it @ 120,000 miles and told me these will last INXS of (to)275,000 miles. Most new cars with rear DISC brakes have short wear issues. Specifically I read a lot of posts between 15,000 miles to 50,000 miles. This if if they are lucky enough to have front disc brakes last 75,000 to 100,000 miles.
Sign In or Register to comment.