A decade ago, limited manufacturers made cars with automatic transmission, but the picture has completely changed today. Automakers are more inclined to produce vehicles with automatic transmissions now, and their production may cover up to one-fourth of the automotive market by 2025.
Though transmission is a core part of any motor vehicle, there is no agreement on what kind is perfect. Car buyers are in a debate to determine the best option between manual cars and automatic cars. After all, each side has its pros and cons based on several parameters.
Let us take a look at a few such parameters and understand them.
Comparison of Automatic and Manual Cars
Based on the difference in the operation of automatic and manual cars, here are a few things to consider:
In manual transmission or manual gearbox, you have to shift gears manually to accelerate or decelerate the car. It has three pedals - brake, accelerator, and clutch. The driver needs to press the clutch while manually shifting the gear using the gearbox.
On the contrary, the gears shift automatically using hydraulic power to change gear in an automatic transmission. It includes a fluid coupling converter with a gearset that provides the required gear change for a vehicle.
You require a lot of practice to get comfortable with manual cars as it involves continuous use of the clutch, accelerator, and gearbox. It can be difficult to focus on multiple things simultaneously, adding to discomfort while driving.
On the other hand, driving an automatic car is a two-pedal game. You don’t need to engage and disengage the clutch every time you shift the gear. It offers an accurate and effortless shifting of gears, especially in heavy traffic.
The main disadvantage of automatic cars is that they cost more than their manual counterparts. You can choose a manual car if you are on a budget as they are cheaper in comparison.
Ease of use
If you are a beginner or are inexperienced with manual cars, then automatic cars are the right option for you. It allows you to concentrate on the road instead of shifting gears and pressing clutches. It is also easier to control speed and road position as both hands stay on the wheel.
On the contrary, manual cars require more concentration and multitasking skills while driving. You have to focus on the road control speed while shifting gears continuously.
Automatic transmission is more complex than manual and requires a higher maintenance cost as it has more sophisticated technology. Since there are many working parts, automatic transmission vehicles take more time to check and repair. Whereas, a manual gearbox is much easier to maintain due to its simple mechanical system.
Automatic cars accelerate fast as they don’t change gears. The energy immediately transfers, driving the vehicle smoothly and speedily. However, they have a limited range of gears (usually 3 to 4).
On the other hand, manual cars may take longer to accelerate but offer a wide range of gears (5 to 6).
It is essential to check the fuel efficiency of a car before buying it. However, manual transmission does not require less fuel to operate. Torque converters in a modern automatic transmission are much improved and consume less fuel when used. Some recently launched automatic cars have a wide range of gears (up to 8), making the car more efficient.
Pros And Cons
Pros Of Manual Cars
- Affordable than automatic version
- Fun to drive
- Less fuel consumption
- Easier to repair/low maintenance costs
Cons Of Manual Cars
- Changing gears every time can be stressful
- Needs constant practice to drive
- Trickier to drive in traffic
- Lower resale value
Pros of Automatic Cars
- Easy and comfortable to drive
- Accelerate quickly
- Good for beginners
- Higher resale value
Cons of Automatic Cars
- High maintenance cost
- Slightly expensive
- Lower in mileage
- Gear might shift too often
How To Choose Between The Two
Considering the above factors can help you choose between a manual car or an automatic car. However, the decision ultimately depends on your personal choice, taste, and affordability. You should also consider your driving frequency, driving experience, and budget.
If you want to purchase a used automatic car, you can check the resale value on Cars24 and grab the best available deal.