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Speakers Corner


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Cars automatic v manual


paddyjack
Resolved

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My brother State side has just got himself a new motor. He then posed this question to me, how come the majority of cars sold in America are automatics, while in Europe the majority are manual?

Anybody got any thoughts on the subject?

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interzone55

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In the USA the roads tend to be straight and you really do not change gear that often. An automatic there seems to make sense.

Now I'd have said the opposite - if you have long straight roads use a manual, once you're up in top gear take your foot off the clutch and relax. But on our roads an automatic makes far more sense...

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interzone55

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BT

I remember having to turn the heater off on steep hills to give an extra horse or two back to the engine.

Talking of modern features, my girlfriend's Kia Soul has a reversing camera, the display is in the rearview mirror, according to Autocar the only other car with this feature (display in mirror, not reversing camera) is the Bugatti Veyron Supersport World Record Edition, which is only £1,984,395 more expensive...

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BT

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alan14

My sisters Nissan Qashqai has a reversing camera which uses the built in multi use screen for Sat Nav etc.

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paddyjack

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Some very interesting answers.

My first 4 wheel driving experience was a Euclid dumper in a quarry where I started my apprenticeship. My first car was a Morris 1000, my current one is a Renault Scenic. I have driven a few automatics in my time never really liked them or felt comfortable driving them.

Think we have answered the question so will mark as resolved.

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interzone55

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BT

A few cars have reversing cameras, some even have them in the front side bumpers, but according to Autocar only the Kia Soul & Veyron have the display in the mirror, which is a very natural place to look.

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Belatucadrus

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My Dad owns a Skoda Octavia with a DSG box and the quoted consumption and emission figures are now better than the manual equivalent. Please no high tech arguments about whether or not the DSG is a real auto box or not, so what if is an electronically controlled dual clutch, multiple-shaft manual gearbox, practically speaking you select Drive and press the pedal, that's automatic enough for me.

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Quickbeam

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"Please no high tech arguments... that's automatic enough for me."

However, the above does explain why it matches a manual transmission for fuel economy, an auto box with a torque converter absorbs the lost power in the hydraulic power transfer, and you can never make that more efficient than a simple mechanical input/output shaft operation.

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Quickbeam

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The VW DSG gearbox operation DSG vid

1: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WVWP7TYhP0c I quite fancy one myself now.

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Graham.

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Covergirl

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In 1991 I used to borrow the company car which was a 1990 Honda Civic automatic. Better performance cold than hot - simply pile on some revs, release the handbrake and pop it into One until it screamed for Two and pop it into Drive when up to speed. For faster acceleration when overtaking, just pop it back into Two.

Another question - why do the tyres on American cars always squeal at the slightest deviation from a straight line?

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