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New Automatic vs. Manual Question

Which is better for a driver with bad habits? A manual when he doesn’t like to shift so starts off in 2nd and doesn’t hear when it needs to go up to 5th, or an automatic when he starts off in Low and leaves it there? And what happens to the auto tranny/engine when kept in Low?

I doubt anyone with the skillset you describe could pass a drivers license test…

A person who can’t manage this part of driving shouldn’t be on the road.

A person who is too lazy to amend such bad habits should not be behind the wheel at all.

Both are bad for the engine. If he buys a stick, he should start in 1st. If he buys an automatic, he should keep it in D, unless he is going up a hill.

If this is a newer car the auto transmission if put in “L” or “1” would start in the lowest gear (first) and upshift only when the motor approaches the max rev limit, when in 2nd it shifts again when the motor reaches the max rev limit, and so on. This means at 65mph the car would be in either 2nd or 3rd gear. Lots of extra revs for the motor, extra noise from the motor, and horrible gas mileage. This technique might be useful on a race track but that’s about it.

As for starting a manual trans in 2nd gear this isn’t great for the clutch but in many cars wouldn’t be a big issue. Now if the car is fully loaded, towing a trailer, or starting up on a steep uphill grade the start in 2nd gear is much more wear and tear on the clutch. Not shifting up to 4th or 5th is lazy, tough on the car, revs the motor needlessly, and wastes gas.

Whoever this driver is I’d make sure to never lend him/her my car. I also won’t help with any repair bills for this driver. These practices are going to cost a lot of money over time, so the driver should pay for the repairs due to his/r driving habits.

If I had to make a choice I’d say the manual will have less repairs due to the driver’s habits. But in my opinion this driver should take the train.

In normal driving there is zero need to use anything other than park, reverse or drive. That kind of driver is what they make automatic transmissions for.

04 TSX 6sp:

If you are asking this question because you know someone who drives like this, instead of asking which type of transmission is appropriate for him/her, you should be researching both driving lessons and hearing aids for this person.

If this person can’t hear the engine screaming at really high revs, then he/she likely also can’t hear car horns or sirens of emergency vehicles. Also, almost every make of car includes a tachometer nowadays. If this person ignores the tach, he/she will probably also ignore things like a temperature gauge that indicates overheating, or an oil pressure light that predicts imminent self-destruction for the engine. Put all of this together, and your friend or relative will likely destroy an engine somewhere along the line–regardless of the type of transmission in his/her car.

Get this person a hearing aid and driving lessons!

Wow! so now I feel vindicated but am still going to have to find a forceful but less inflammatory way to tell my spouse why I don’t want him to drive my cars (one stick, one automatic). This is only the second time I’ve used this forum but I knew you would come to my rescue. Thanks!

I, together with the other posters, wonder how your husband passed his driving test in the first place. Agree that remedial driving lessons are in order. You can sell this as taking a “defensive driving course” as protection from road hazards. Please let us know what your course of action will be.

It’s good to know you have 2 cars, so one will always be available when the gear box in the other one gives up the ghost.

Which hurts more? Sitting on a hand grenade or stepping on a land mine?