FJ Cruiser Manual or Auto?

apersonaperson Member Posts: 5
edited June 2014 in Toyota
We are ready to buy an FJ and can't decide whether to get a manual or auto transmission. Any thoughts on pros and cons of either (other than gas mileage)?


  • tidestertidester Member Posts: 10,059
    Which type are you accustomed to driving?

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  • apersonaperson Member Posts: 5
    I prefer driving an automatic and my husband prefers a manual. My husband is going to be the primary driver, so I guess we will go with the manual. He was just trying to figure out if there was any downside to getting the manual other than the gas mileage isn't as good. When he drove an FJ last year, there weren't any manuals available at the lot so he has only driven an automatic FJ.
  • tidestertidester Member Posts: 10,059
    I think that in the end it comes down to personal preference but here are some factors you might consider:

    (a) Automatic will be less tiring if you do a lot of stop and go city driving.

    (b) Automatic transmissions typically cost $600 to $1,000+ more than manual transmissions.

    (c) You do get better gas mileage with a manual transmission.

    (d) Automatic transmissions are much more complicated than manual transmissions so reliability may be a factor, i.e. more can go wrong with them.

    (e) Many feel that a manual transmission provides better "road feedback" giving them better control over the vehicle.

    Did I adequately muddy the waters for you? ;)

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  • brownznhbrownznh Member Posts: 2
    The manual does NOT get better gas mileage- check the stickers! I have a manual and I love to drive it, but the gas is killing me. It is at least 5 mpg less than auto because it is FULL TIME 4x4. On the other hand, unless you are off road, you never have to shift for bad weather/road conditions.
  • tidestertidester Member Posts: 10,059
    It is at least 5 mpg less than auto because it is FULL TIME 4x4.

    Perhaps I should have said "all other things being equal." Certainly, AWD vs. FWD or RWD will make a difference.

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  • kawagumbykawagumby Member Posts: 2
    Although a manual transmission is simpler, it comes with a part that often needs attention - the clutch. How long a clutch will last, without the need to be replaced or otherwise serviced, often depends a lot upon the driver. But for most long-term car use, a clutch will need to be replaced at least once during ownership. With today's labor charges, that can be a fairly expensive item. If the flywheel needs to be resurfaced the cost can skyrocket.
  • meehmeeh Member Posts: 1
    Hello I am thinking about purchasing an FJ and was wondering whether to go with the FJ Manual or Auto. I have never driven anything but manual on my cars and trucks. Im driving a 4x4 5spd 4Runner right now. I have test driven an auto FJ and it was nice. good acceleration and handling, but there isnt an MT available to test drive. I was wondering how you guys liked it so far? How does the clutch feel? The Gears? How about the MPG? you guys getting the 15/18?Just any information on the MT FJ and the way you feel about them would be nice. Thanks.
  • vchengvcheng Member Posts: 1,284
    I am getting about 16 mpg all city, and the clutch/shift lever/engine combo is a pleasure to drive. The sixth gear is pretty tall and usable over 45 mph, so it doesn't get much use in the city.
  • zenpunkzenpunk Member Posts: 3
    I love the manual transmission, with the short-shifter. Its a pleasure to drive.
  • sparklemahnsparklemahn Member Posts: 11
    I knew I should have splurged for the short shifter! In any case, I love :blush: my new 2008 six speed manual FJ! It shifts smoothly and the clutch reminds me of a German made sports car clutch. It's "un"!
  • shoozieshoozie Member Posts: 4
    Hi, little naive here. Bought a 4x4 manuel FJ from private seller, was such a steal, I had to have it even though I hadn't driven a stick in about 14 years and barely then. I got it down pat but I have no idea what a "short shifter" is? School me.
  • takafoomi1takafoomi1 Member Posts: 8
    Guys i have a question. A local dealership, Toyota dealer, has a yellow 6-speed 2007 FJ Cruiser with 90k miles. Apparently someone used it for commuting. Apparently I can get it for about $15,500 w/o tax and tags. The question is, should I? It's a ton of mileage in a short period of time. They tell me they've gone over it with a fine tooth comb, new tires, fluids, and so forth. It's physically clean.

    I have owned/own other toyotas - my 91 MR2 Turbo has 112k miles and it's much older. Whats the risk in getting something so used up in the prime of its life? Does anyone else have a high mileage FJ?

  • tidestertidester Member Posts: 10,059
    That sounds like a decent price considering the miles. You may want to browse through Toyota FJ Cruiser Prices Paid and Buying Experience to get an idea of what others have been paying recently. I'll just note that the original owner was apparently concerned enough about the high miles on a two year old vehicle to trade it in. :)

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  • agoralikagoralik Member Posts: 1
    i have a question...does anybody know if u can somehow put the manual transmition fj into a 2 wheel drive ? instead of driving it all the time in 4 wheel. ??? let me know...thanks !
  • vchengvcheng Member Posts: 1,284
    Short of removing the front drive shaft, no. The manual FJ is full time 4wd.
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