A huge debate amongst motorheads and car veterans…
Is manual or automatic better?! Is it better for you to lose grip and control over the gearstick to cruise around more comfortably?
There are so many different opinions and points raised by professionals and experts, let’s give them a look and talk about what’s good, what’s bad, and everything you need to know before you can cash your car and decide if you should change your driving style or what.
Let’s Make Things Clear First: What’s the Difference?
Manual gives you a gear system you can control yourself by moving the gearstick to choose a suitable gear according to the speed you’re driving; as your speed increases, you’re moving up the gears and vice versa.
Automatic, as the name suggests, takes that burden off your shoulders and moves up and down the gears themselves without having you worry about it and using both hands constantly.
But is it actually a “burden” to have control over the gears?
Let’s find out…
The Pros & Cons of Automatic Compared to Manual
● More Comfortable to Drive
A lot of people prefer to drive automatic cars solely for this reason, they’re simply easier to drive because you don’t need to use both hands and always keep in mind your speed. You can easily move your stick shift to D and forget about it until you need to drive in reverse or park.
(what many don’t know here is that, with time, it comes naturally to manual drivers, so they forget about the gearstick eventually and start to control it subconsciously)
● More Convenient in Traffic
If you live in condensed towns and cities, you know the struggle is real… when you’re driving in traffic, you’re constantly stopping and moving again; driving a manual gear under those conditions is just torture because you have to constantly be shifting the gearstick and working the clutch.
(it’s also bad for your transmission and wears it out over time more than an automatic)
● More Expensive
Obviously, you’re going to pay more if you want to drive a car with an automatic transmission. Plus, it costs more to maintain and fix due to its counterparts costing generally more than manual.
● Not as Fun to Drive
Many drivers, especially the old-school guys and track veterans, don’t like automatic cars because they lose control… to them, it’s as if the car is driving, not the driver.
The Pros & Cons of Manual Compared to Automatic
● More Control
Driving in winter or on steep hills, being able to choose which gear you’re driving on is a huge advantage…
That’s because your automatic transmission might fail you when shifting down to a lower gear can give you more torque and grip on the road and speed of your car, and at the same time puts less strain on your gears, transmission system, and engine.
(Add to that the fact that if you drive manual, you can easily drive an automatic. But it’s not the other way around)
● Higher Speed
A better driver knows the clutch more than the automatic transmission does. As it can make the car more cumbersome and strain it more on steep roads and hills.
● Less Expensive
Opposite to automatic cars, manual cars and cheaper to maintain. That’s because their counterparts are cheaper and easier to work with.
This means you will be paying less money to keep your manual shift car on the road.
● Better Fuel Efficiency
This depends on how you drive your car; how hard you’re working your clutch and keep your foot on the gas pedal.
Also, how late or early you change gears plays a huge factor in this; the earlier the better it is for fuel-efficiency. But knowing this secret, don’t go ahead straining your engine.
but overall, driving a manual car will cost you less fuel than your average automatic, this way you’ll be getting more kilometers out of your gas tank.
● Less Safe
Not using your manual clutch correctly will definitely damage your car, and a not-functioning transmission is also an ingredient in the recipe of accidents.
Also, driving manual requires more attention from the driver to the clutch and gearstick, and speed. To some, that might be too much to keep focused on the road.
● More Stress on the Driver
Having to repeatedly use the clutch, brakes, and gas will require more bodywork from the driver and that might not be exactly the safest and most healthy conditions for everyone.
What’s Better for You?
Well, that depends on one question and one question only: how do you prefer to drive?
If you like to take control, be efficient, and if you love driving, you might want to consider manual. But if you like to chill and take it easy, you should definitely go for automatic.
Anshed Mulla is the Managing Director of Sell Your Motors in the UAE. Sell Your Motors is a company that offers car buying services in Dubai.
For over 10 years, Sell Your Motors has been a noteworthy company in the automobile trading industry; offering professional purchasing services that reached thousands of people in the UAE.