One for the petrolheads

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One for the petrolheads

Postby Pepper Pig » July 25th, 2019, 12:29 pm

When I first met OH back in the sixties he was the only person I knew who drove an automatic car - a Volvo 121 as it happens. https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Volvo_Amazon . It was a lovely car and we had it for nearly twenty years. At various stages I’ve had a manual but OH has always had automatics. When my knee finally packed up we downsized to just the one car, always an automatic. Two of my best girlfriends have always stuck with their 5 or 6 speed manual gearboxes and inferred that I’m not a proper driver!!! :o :o :o One of them has now been diagnosed with a serious knee problem due to the strain brought on by her driving position! :o :lol: The other admits that she has a manual because she likes to be in control. The first one is going to investigate automatics “in case they are better these days”. :lol: :lol: :lol:

We have never had a duff automatic. Driving an automatic in icy conditions requires just as much skill as a manual. Why are manual cars still “a thing”? Am I lazy or are my girlfriends control freaks? One drives a top of the range Ford Focus, the other a soft top VW. BTW I adore driving!

What are your preferences? And does anyone have a fully electric car?
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Re: One for the petrolheads

Postby suffolk » July 25th, 2019, 12:43 pm

I have driven various automatics but I prefer driving cars with a manual gearbox ... I just feel ‘more engaged’ and I enjoy this. However if my relatively good left knee ever caused me problems I wouldn’t hesitate to change to an automatic.
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Re: One for the petrolheads

Postby Ratatouille » July 25th, 2019, 12:45 pm

PP we have always had an automatic. I couldn't drive anything else and Mr R has always said why waste the effort and strain? I am certainly not a perolhead and neither is Mr R who is of the opinion that cars are simply for getting you from a to b with the maximum comfort and minimum effort.
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Re: One for the petrolheads

Postby PatsyMFagan » July 25th, 2019, 5:43 pm

When I was fleet manager for Hilton Hotels... automatic gear boxes were discouraged as they had higher CO2 emissions, therefore a higher tax implication. Automatic cars also had higher capacity engines .. for instance the smallest engine was at least a 1.8 cc iirc. (Aero might confirm this )

If my little Hyundai i10 came with an auto engine at the same price as a manual I would jump at it.
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Re: One for the petrolheads

Postby earthmaiden » July 25th, 2019, 7:33 pm

It's odd isn't it. Most countries have embraced automatics and we haven't. Most HGVs and larger cars seem to be.

I have to admit I feel it is sort of 'cheating', I have no idea why. It means that people with slight disabilities are able to drive. I have a feeling that a long time ago, it was felt that an automatic wouldn't be ideal in certain situations where changing gear would give you more control. I seem to remember my father explaining such things. We've come a long way since then. I've only driven automatics in the USA and Australia. It takes me several days to adjust and I think people need to show that they are proficient in driving them just as those who have only driven automatics have to with an ordinary car. The awful thing is that I start to think that the car can read my mind and forget that I still have to tell it if I want to reverse and I forget what to do with my feet :oops: .

Pat - I used to work in the hire car section of a fleet management company. Automatics were certainly only available with higher spec cars. I always remember telling a guy who had been lumbered into driving a foreign diplomat from the airport and around London that we only had an automatic available in the kind of high spec car he needed. He was already nervous and had never driven an automatic, we said that the delivery driver would run though the main points with him - I always wondered how he got on!
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Re: One for the petrolheads

Postby aero280 » July 25th, 2019, 8:24 pm

The old automatics were almost always the Borg Warner 3 speed box which was slow and very thirsty and rightly unpopular. Modern automatics have more gears, electronic control, and lock-up in the higher gears. They are now quite acceptable. Fuel consumption on a long journey is comparable with a manual. Around town, the extra fuel consumption is offset by the less stressful driving. I needed to change my car and ended up with a modern auto by default. I’ve stuck with autos ever since.
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Re: One for the petrolheads

Postby Rainbow » July 25th, 2019, 11:29 pm

earthmaiden wrote:It's odd isn't it. Most countries have embraced automatics and we haven't.

I was wondering about that. Most people I know over here in Australia have automatics.
earthmaiden wrote:I've only driven automatics in the USA and Australia. It takes me several days to adjust and I think people need to show that they are proficient in driving them just as those who have only driven automatics have to with an ordinary car.

Interesting that you call a manual car 'an ordinary car'!! I'd call the automatic quite ordinary :D
I know young people who take their car driving test in an automatic but they are still licensed to drive a manual, even though they've never driven one. Don't think that they'd ever want to, though :lol:
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Re: One for the petrolheads

Postby suffolk » July 26th, 2019, 7:17 am

I’m pretty sure that here in the UK, if you pass your test in an automatic then that’s all you can drive ... that certainly used to be the case ... anyone know if that’s changed?
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Re: One for the petrolheads

Postby PatsyMFagan » July 26th, 2019, 7:46 am

It's still the law that if you pass your test in an automatic, then you can only drive them unaccompanied. You have to re-sit (probably only the practical side) a test in a manual. :rolleyes:

Over here automatics are always more expensive than a manual equivalent :rolleyes:
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Re: One for the petrolheads

Postby earthmaiden » July 26th, 2019, 8:24 am

I don't think you are qualified to drive anything but an automatic if you pass your test in one. Same in the USA. What I meant was, if you pass your test in an ordinary car (and I am calling it that because my brain has forgotten the term - is it manual transmission?) you can just jump into an automatic with no previous experience. I think that people should at least be taught how understand the controls. (When DD and I picked up a hire car in Sydney they apologised and said although we'd booked an ordinary car they only had an automatic available. There was no representative to even go through it with us. I had driven one in the USA and DD not at all but she is a practical person and after we'd read the manual we set off into the peak Sydney morning rush hour - I have always really admired her for that. My turn came later, it took a while to get used to it but I consider that I was a danger to other drivers until I did get used to it).
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Re: One for the petrolheads

Postby dennispc » July 26th, 2019, 3:13 pm

Definitely not a petrol head. I've a metal box that takes me from A to B. That's it. Tend to keep cars a long time, previous to current one 13years but the electronic started to go. Friends were surprised I stayed with manual for the new one. Autos are more expensive to buy and most of my driving is in town.

However, the biggest factor in my thinking was that after 60 odd years of driving I'd find it difficult to adapt, so have stayed with manual. Too many stories of elderly folk getting their pedals mixed up - one in our Waitrose, went through the window and a member of staff was hurt.
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Re: One for the petrolheads

Postby StokeySue » July 26th, 2019, 3:47 pm

I first really encountered automatics in the USA in the 70s - to me US cars were great clumsy lumbering things and the gear boxes too

I learned to drive a Mercedes automatic in the 80s, hated it at first, didn’t feel in control, but got used to it eventually

I think if I’d had another car it would have been my first automatic, so much stop start round London it’s much less stressful, I think I decided last time I went round the M25 and it was alternating jams and free flowing sections
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Re: One for the petrolheads

Postby EmWilk » July 26th, 2019, 6:35 pm

My last car (a VW Touareg), in the spec I wanted (R Line), was only available in auto. I was really miffed because I always saw it as a bit cheaty and a boring way to drive. I soon got used to it :lol: .

When it came to ordering current car (S5), I noticed that they did actually do a manual version but I conveniently overlooked that and went for the auto again! :lol:

I'm sure that the majority of higher spec cars only come in an auto these days.
They're all auto/tiptronic/dsg type things now anyway I think? Much better than some of the family and extended family's cars I recall from being younger which seemed very slow to set off and just sound awful!

I'll be looking again in a few months and I don't think I'd go back to manual now :oops:

OH had a hybrid the other year (Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV) but I didnt like it much. It set off rapid like a go kart but the range wasn't great and the 2.0l petrol engine which kicked in was pants.

He may well go for an electric again, he's after a Tesla for next year but I'll be sticking with the engine as I'm a bit of a petrol head :oops:
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Re: One for the petrolheads

Postby Rainbow » July 26th, 2019, 10:18 pm

Just looked up the driving test rules in Australia. Apparently South Australia is the only state that lets you take the test in an automatic and then drive a manual - all other states have an extra test.
That's why my niece could drive a manual after taking her test in an automatic, in Adelaide. I thought it was a bit odd at the time!
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Re: One for the petrolheads

Postby slimpersoninside » July 28th, 2019, 1:36 pm

I have owned and driven both. My preference would be automatic if given the choice, but we buy 2nd hand so it's whatever's a good buy. My daughter is auto licence only, she's happy with that. Can't say manual to auto was a big deal for me at all, much easier.
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Re: One for the petrolheads

Postby Rocky » August 2nd, 2019, 1:11 pm

Late to this discussion :D

Where I live in BVI the roads are absurdly steep, narrow and twisty (one chap from the Scottish prison service commented to me that you have to pay to drive in conditions like that in most countries). I have a Suzuki Jimmy which is tiny with a tiny engine. The only version that can manage the hills - particularly in the rain - is a manual. When I bought mine, the dealer told me it could get up a vertical wall if in first and 4WD and I think he was right.... At the other end of the spectrum, higher spec cars with bigger engines are fine on the hills. I like both and enjoy roaring up the hills in OH’s (slightly cheesy) Jeep Wrangler which is automatic.
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Re: One for the petrolheads

Postby patpoyntz » August 2nd, 2019, 8:13 pm

Rocky, when we lived in the UAE, I had some quite smart cars, including a lovely 1977 red Mercedes coupe, (manual), and of course the ubiquitous Pajero, (automatic...very good for Dubai traffic), however I needed a new car shortly before we left, and I got a Jimney. It used to hop skip and jump through desert trips and through Wadis, and we had it shipped home when we retired. It served us well for several really bad winters up here in the highlands, and I was devastated when, through sheer carelessness I wrote it off.
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Re: One for the petrolheads

Postby Rocky » August 3rd, 2019, 12:42 pm

I love it Patpoyntz! Apparently Jimnys are rated very badly by reviewers but extremely highly by owners. I love mine. OH is 6’3 and looks like a giant in it but suits me!
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Re: One for the petrolheads

Postby Pepper Pig » August 23rd, 2019, 4:12 pm

Does anyone here have a DashCam? “Which” are reviewing them this month and reckon they are A Good Thing. I’m tempted because I had an accident in my Yeti a couple of years ago and the guy in the car behind had footage from his DashCam which showed it was totally the other person’s fault. I love a gadget! But this could be being a Good Samaritan as well. (And yes, I am aware it could also prejudice in the other direction). :o

This was their Top Buy.

https://www.amazon.co.uk/NEXTBASE-522GW ... way&sr=8-3
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Re: One for the petrolheads

Postby aero280 » August 23rd, 2019, 7:38 pm

We both have Nextbase cameras now. Been in for a couple of years. Since my wife was hit by a learner motorcyclist who overtook her while she was signalling to turn right, and then lied about it.

Lots of options an easy to use. The only tricky bit for a non-Techy is putting in the permanent power supply. I had no problem but I’ve been fiddling with cars for nearly 60 years. Most cameras come with a USB connector for all the power and computer stuff. But a permanent feed for power saves having to take the camera out each trip and charging it.
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Re: One for the petrolheads

Postby Pepper Pig » August 24th, 2019, 12:03 pm

Yes. The Which report went on about getting the hard-wiring done. Will have to look into that if I proceed. Thanks Aero.
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Re: One for the petrolheads

Postby Pepper Pig » August 29th, 2019, 11:19 am

This is probably a question for Aero but I’ve just had the car washed and there seem to be a couple of very light windscreen chips. Can anyone tell me if this is still covered by insurance with no fuss and all that gubbins? I just remember the days when you paid for Third Party, Fire, Theft and Windscreen.

It seems to have changed . . . . :oops:
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Re: One for the petrolheads

Postby Busybee » August 29th, 2019, 1:46 pm

It should be PP, believe it or not we have gone through two windscreens and panoramic roof within the last year. It has cost us the £95 excess fir each claim.

The panoramic roof would have been in the region if £2,500 according to Autoglass, it being a whole day job for two men to
replace it. The manager has asked us to ring him direct if it ever happens again...........so he can arrange to be on holiday :lol:

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Re: One for the petrolheads

Postby Pepper Pig » August 29th, 2019, 2:50 pm

Thanks BB. Blimey, what have you been doing? :? :D
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Re: One for the petrolheads

Postby Busybee » August 29th, 2019, 4:29 pm

Pepper Pig wrote:Thanks BB. Blimey, what have you been doing? :? :D


Rough country roads and tracks. One new windscreen lasted all of three days!

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Re: One for the petrolheads

Postby Pepper Pig » August 29th, 2019, 4:31 pm

:o
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