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(Jalopnik)   Real drivers know how to work a stick. Which reminds me, say hello to your mom   (jalopnik.com ) divider line
    More: Followup, fuel efficient, electronics manufacturing, manual transmission, Pol Pot, ethical standards  
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3534 clicks; posted to Geek » on 16 May 2012 at 10:38 PM (3 years ago)   |   Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2012-05-16 07:32:16 PM  
a stick shift makes a fun car more fun to drive. whiny saturn owners buy an appliance less fun to drive than a fridge.
 
2012-05-16 07:54:42 PM  
An automatic Jeep is an abomination.

Article also missed the best reason for manual. Popping the clutch if you have a dead battery.
 
2012-05-16 08:24:51 PM  
Ethical?

No, it is not ethical. You should be humiliated for even considering that it could be ethical to make a consumer based choice to purchase a vehicle with one of 2 kinds of transmissions.
 
2012-05-16 08:31:13 PM  

eltejon: An automatic Jeep is an abomination.

Article also missed the best reason for manual. Popping the clutch if you have a dead battery.


Especially with a super-low 1st gear. I could start my dad's truck by pushing it a little and hopping back in the cab while it was still rolling, put it in gear, and pop it.
 
2012-05-16 08:34:24 PM  
Most of my cars over the years have been sticks...

My Passat wagon is an auto
My GTI is a 5 speed.

So is my Honda CB750.

I love doing it myself.
 
2012-05-16 08:37:23 PM  

eltejon: An automatic Jeep is an abomination.

Article also missed the best reason for manual. Popping the clutch if you have a dead battery.


Or...I don't know, find someone to give you a jump? Self reliance is all well and good, but there's no shame in relying on the kidness of strangers either.
 
2012-05-16 08:41:13 PM  

Ambivalence: eltejon: An automatic Jeep is an abomination.

Article also missed the best reason for manual. Popping the clutch if you have a dead battery.

Or...I don't know, find someone to give you a jump? Self reliance is all well and good, but there's no shame in relying on the kidness of strangers either.


Not always an option either. I have jumped, been jumped, but also been in places with no one else around. The only thing better may be my old 59 Renault Dauphine. It has a hand crank.
 
2012-05-16 08:44:23 PM  
If they made an automatic that didn't shift 5 times when it should never have changed out of the original gear to begin with maybe I'd think about buying one

Autos also suck for racing, not that the original author would find that use ethical anyway
 
2012-05-16 08:54:43 PM  
I have a semiautomatic 6 speed now instead of a manual, and although it's certainly more convenient (I can drop it over into pure automatic when my hands are full) I miss a real manual. For example, even though there's no need with this type to get off the throttle while shifting, I still do.
 
2012-05-16 10:05:26 PM  

eltejon: An automatic Jeep is an abomination.

Article also missed the best reason for manual. Popping the clutch if you have a dead battery.


Don't most modern manuals frown on that due to the deleterious effects on the pollution control systems?
 
2012-05-16 10:46:06 PM  
My Vloster has a double-clutch transmission. I can shift gears manually, leave it in full auto, or override the auto with paddle shifters. I like it.
 
2012-05-16 10:47:36 PM  
Always fun when she begs for the heel and toe.
 
2012-05-16 10:53:21 PM  
www.nextmovie.com

Electric starters? Psssh. Real drivers use hand cranks.
 
2012-05-16 10:53:23 PM  
www.motor-cardesign.com

So, one day, the '94 cheap my dad bought for me breaks down, and is out going to be out for repairs for about two weeks. I ask the old man, "Well...teach me how to drive the Aveo." Thankfully, he didn't, but my niece did (she's older than me). The Aveo is/was a great car to learn to drive stick on. The clutch isn't very sensitive and you can floor the gas and still not accelerate. Despite the lack of power windows, actual seats (the seats are foam), or a cd player, it's a halfway decent car.
 
2012-05-16 11:03:46 PM  
I think everyone should know how to drive a stick, because to learn to drive a stick well, requires you to actually LEARN about your car.

Someone who understands the way their car behaves, and how to get it to do exactly what you want, when you want, is going to be an inherently safer driver. Automatics are just too easy for any dumbshiat to use, and because of that you've got a lot of clueless people who really shouldn't be behind the wheel.
 
2012-05-16 11:07:29 PM  
My Sentra had a CVT, and it was pretty zippy. I liked that car, but a Dodge truck hit me at a red light and drove the trunk into the back seat when I only had 14,000 miles on it. I have a 6-speed manual Versa now, and as much as I liked that Sentra, the Versa is more fun to drive.
 
2012-05-16 11:15:07 PM  

Lord Jubjub: Don't most modern manuals frown on that due to the deleterious effects on the pollution control systems?


Source? I've never heard this one, and I'm not sure which emission controls you could damage by doing this. And as far as I know it can be done on an automatic as well (in neutral, roll to 20mph, "pop" into drive or low). Disclaimer: Never actually done it an auto, only manual, just the stories the older guys told said it was possible.

The fiancé and I have a theory that stick drivers are also less prone to accidents, because driving is less of a mindless thing. They are also cheaper/easier to repair and maintain, though granted that's only a concern if you can't rebuild them yourself.

The only time I will ever buy an automatic trans is if I'm buying a truck meant to haul.
 
2012-05-16 11:19:27 PM  

eltejon: An automatic Jeep is an abomination.

Article also missed the best reason for manual. Popping the clutch if you have a dead battery.


I like being able to control the speed of the vehicle without relying on the brakes, which is especially useful on snow and ice.
 
2012-05-16 11:21:17 PM  

Cewley: a stick shift makes a fun car more fun to drive. whiny saturn owners buy an appliance less fun to drive than a fridge.


My '96 SL2 was a stick.

With the exception of a Jetta I leased, every car I've owned for the past 20 years has been manual.
 
2012-05-16 11:26:00 PM  
What does a driving style preference have to do with ethics? Is the stick shift detachable for use as a baby seal club?
 
2012-05-16 11:31:09 PM  
Automatic transmissions can indeed be pop-started like a manual can, it just takes higher speeds.

Or, at least they used to be able to. I had an 84 Celebrity with the 'iron duke' under the hood (the I4 2.5 iron block, for the rest of you), and if you got it up past 30-33ish MPH via a hill or tow, you could pop it into drive and start the engine.

Although, I was a teenager at the time. Now, my pickup is manual transmission. And, the new pickup I'm getting from the dealer on Sunday is a manual.

Manual transmissions are just flat-out better.
 
2012-05-16 11:31:47 PM  

CheetahOlivetti: My Sentra had a CVT, and it was pretty zippy. I liked that car, but a Dodge truck hit me at a red light and drove the trunk into the back seat when I only had 14,000 miles on it. I have a 6-speed manual Versa now, and as much as I liked that Sentra, the Versa is more fun to drive.


Sorry bud, but the Versa is pretty roundly acknowledged as a soulless piece of crap.

The thing about automatics is you use your brakes to do fricking everything in city driving. You are always on the brakes in an automatic. I do 90% of my miles on the same 40 square blocks of town maintaining properties. I have a 25 year old hard top suzuki samurai that costs almost nothing to operate. It has no doors so its easy to get in and out. In the winter I put the doors back on and have 4x4 for snow. Its eco-footprint is non-existant. It cost almost nothing in raw materials to manufacture it, and it has a tiny engine, and its been around as long as 4 american cars worth of materials and manufacturing. I use the manual for 90% of my braking because its geared so low that in Idle in first gear it is going about 4 mph. I rarely shift higher than third gear. Most of the time I shut the engine off before im in my parking space and just coast it to a stop. Fully loaded with tools, lifted, on too large tires and with too much off road accessories in city driving it gets 16 mpg. Sounds terrible until you do the math on what it costs to operate per mile, its about 30 cents a mile vs almost a dollar a mile for the tundra.

Its gotten so bad that I hate driving my Tundra around town, It seems like I never take my foot off the brake pedal when I do.
 
2012-05-16 11:34:17 PM  

Ambivalence: eltejon: An automatic Jeep is an abomination.

Article also missed the best reason for manual. Popping the clutch if you have a dead battery.

Or...I don't know, find someone to give you a jump? Self reliance is all well and good, but there's no shame in relying on the kidness of strangers either.


Have you tried that lately? People seem farking allergic to the concept of providing a jump these days. I just carry a booster battery now.

Lord Jubjub: Don't most modern manuals frown on that due to the deleterious effects on the pollution control systems?


IIRC, My manual says not to pop start for that very reason.
 
2012-05-16 11:35:05 PM  

Yaxe: [www.motor-cardesign.com image 640x481]

So, one day, the '94 cheap my dad bought for me breaks down, and is out going to be out for repairs for about two weeks. I ask the old man, "Well...teach me how to drive the Aveo." Thankfully, he didn't, but my niece did (she's older than me). The Aveo is/was a great car to learn to drive stick on. The clutch isn't very sensitive and you can floor the gas and still not accelerate. Despite the lack of power windows, actual seats (the seats are foam), or a cd player, it's a halfway decent car.


I taught my 8 year old how to drive a manual on my 4x4. In 4wd low it is impossible to stall because it has a 4-1 crawler transfer case. to go you "see-saw" which means the clutch and gas move opposite each other, up and down. To stop it was the "bug stomp" ie drive both feet to the floor on the clutch and brakes. It took her about a minute to get the concept and start driving it around the yard. She only ran over a wood pile and a ladder....thats my girl.
 
2012-05-16 11:36:36 PM  
Personal preference.
 
2012-05-16 11:45:23 PM  

Fish in a Barrel: Lord Jubjub: Don't most modern manuals frown on that due to the deleterious effects on the pollution control systems?

IIRC, My manual says not to pop start for that very reason.


Yep, my manual says "Don't try to push-start or pull-start your vehicle." in the section on emissions control (4-3).
 
2012-05-16 11:49:06 PM  
i.imgur.com
 
2012-05-16 11:54:10 PM  
I can't drive a stick, and I have little interest in learning how. I dislike driving; for me it's just the most convenient way to get from point a to point b, and that's it. Anything that makes it less of a pain in the ass is a welcome relief. Having said that, is driving a manual ethical? Who comes up with this shiat? How would that question even enter your mind? Exactly how neurotic and guilt-ridden would you have to be? I'm honestly sorry for the author of the original article. Some people enjoy the process of driving and for others it's a chore, that's all. It's like cooking.
 
2012-05-16 11:55:12 PM  
Oh, drive whatever kind of shiatmobile you want, and then go f**k yourself.
All of you.
 
2012-05-16 11:55:50 PM  

Dommo: I think everyone should know how to drive a stick, because to learn to drive a stick well1, requires you to actually LEARN about your car.2

Someone who understands the way their car behaves, and how to get it to do exactly what you want, when you want, is going to be an inherently safer driver.3 Automatics are just too easy for any dumbshiat to use4, and because of that you've got a lot of clueless people who really shouldn't be behind the wheel.5


I don't think there's a single thing here that isn't either false or beside the point. Let's take them one by one.

1. I've known a few demonstrably shiatty stick-drivers in my time. (One of them, due respect to submitter, my Mom. Her notorious promiscuity is another matter.) I don't mean they were bad at the stick part, stalling out all the time--I mean they were terrible drivers who happened to drive stick.

2. To drive stick requires you to know of the existence of the clutch pedal. Everything else is muscle memory. It does not give you zenlike insight into the being that is your car.

3. Sure. But there is nothing having to do with moving or controlling the car that you can do with a manual transmission that you can't do with an automatic.

4. Any dumbshiat can learn to drive stick (me, for instance). The only safety advantage comes from passing your permit test at the age of 16-and-four-weeks instead of 16-and-two-weeks.

5. I wholeheartedly endorse your call for vastly more rigorous and difficult driving certification tests. Because that's what it would take to get dangerous drivers off the road. Making lousy drivers drive stick will just mean a spike in fatal rear-end crashes while they figure out how to be lousy drivers that aren't stalling out on the freeway every five minutes.

Look, it's kinda fun to drive stick. Do whatever you want. But at this point, it's the automotive equivalent of only listening to vinyl: a harmless affectation until the guy who has it starts getting a superiority complex.
 
2012-05-16 11:58:00 PM  
Real drivers disable ABS and traction control.

Real drivers disable power steering.

Real drivers bypass the brake booster and only use drum brakes.


/etc
//yawn
 
2012-05-17 12:12:57 AM  

SN1987a goes boom: What does a driving style preference have to do with ethics? Is the stick shift detachable for use as a baby seal club?


I wish!
 
2012-05-17 12:14:29 AM  
Manual Jetta TDI. 40 city, 50 highway. Suck it.
 
2012-05-17 12:21:55 AM  
I drive stick, and I love it. I have never once had an ethical dilemma over my choice of transmission.

Driving sick gives me more control. If I start skidding on a patch of ice, the clutch is usually enough to correct it. If I am having difficulties getting up a hill (2 litre 4cyl engine), downshifting helps. If someone is tailgating me, downshifting and then going back to the gear I was previously in is usually enough to get them to back the fark off.
 
2012-05-17 12:27:48 AM  
Driving a manual just seems like it would be exhausting to me.
I drive because I have to. I have little choice in the matter.
If I want to get around my city without depending on others I need to drive.

Needing to add one more worry about my drive is something I'm simply uninterested in.
Driving to me is a chore, not a hobby, not an experience.


I would love to move to a city with a decent public transportation system so that I didn't have to drive at all.
I don't care if it takes me longer to get where I"m going. I hate driving that much.
 
2012-05-17 12:34:38 AM  
If it helps, there was an early crossbreed. The sportomatic from Porsche was the worst of the manual AND automatic worlds. Modern slushboxes aren't even in the same realm.
 
2012-05-17 12:46:30 AM  

Yaxe: my niece did (she's older than me)


Come again?
 
2012-05-17 01:04:00 AM  
Stick is fun. And I've popped the clutch on a dead battery to get the beast going. I've never had an automatic.
 
2012-05-17 01:04:42 AM  

eltejon: The only thing better may be my old 59 Renault Dauphine.


I think this may be the first time in recorded history that the adjective "better" has been used to describe a Renault Dauphine.
 
2012-05-17 02:30:29 AM  
It's funny, because my mom is the one who told me long ago that she favors manual transmission for the extra level of control the driver has, especially in the snow since our entire family are die-hard skiers.

/my mom was a ski racer back in the 60's
//not quite Olympic caliber
///one level below
 
2012-05-17 03:05:00 AM  

HotWingAgenda: Yaxe: my niece did (she's older than me)

Come again?


Dead serious. She's not my biological niece (because that would require us to be a veeeery young family), but I think you can figure out the marriage gymnastics required.
 
2012-05-17 03:20:02 AM  
A stick. Phhhhht.

I suppose you want a hand crank sticking out of the front grill as well.

www.collectorsconnection.com
 
2012-05-17 03:31:08 AM  
I'd settle for having more of the drivers around me remain in their lanes, read the farking signs, and stop pulling into right hand lanes that only extend on-ramps for 200 feet.

/Just because you put a sign up in English and Spanish doesn't mean they can actually read.
 
2012-05-17 04:36:12 AM  
few automatics can be towed with all the wheels on the road due to the transmission not getting lubed so forget towing it behind your motorhome. manuals are easier and cheaper to repair. much harder to text or use your cellphone with a manual-good or bad thing? less chance of someone asking to borrow your car. i have a beat up old extended cargo van and get asked often, even by people who are almost strangers, if they can borrow it for the day or longer cuz they are too cheap to rent a moving truck. "its a 3 on the tree stick and i'm busy. even if you say you can drive a stick its a funny beast and i can't take the chance you tear it up. sorry. bye"
 
2012-05-17 04:42:14 AM  
I bet that Saturn gets pretty good mileage. They're light and 1.9 liters I think. He should be proud. Ethical? Wtf?

So my buddy at work can't drive stick and clowns me for enjoying it myself. "real men aren't afraid to let technology do it for them" bah! Driving manuals is fun as hell. It sure is a bastard in stop and go, tho. I'm hoping to convert my daily Nissan sr20 automatic to one of those turbos from Japan; im looking forward to stick again.
 
2012-05-17 05:39:32 AM  
I've owned one manual tran car (a Chevy Cavalier); I had it for less than 3 years,
and went through 2 clutches in that time. Needless to say, the ability to drive a
manual doesn't equate with being able to drive it well.

I much prefer automatics, since I'm not hung up on POOOOOOWWWWEEERRRRR!, and have
a lot more fun driving without having to worry about what gear I as in.
 
2012-05-17 06:47:38 AM  
I've driven manuals (except rentals) since college. Love 'em, especially in the snow.

I was driving to work in a very mild snow storm two winters ago and came to a stoplight on a busy divided road. The road was inclined, slick with snow and slush, and I was 5 cars back in a double line of about 12 cars. There was an empty left-turn-only lane to my left.

When the light turned green, the avalanche of cars began as the front cars tried to go forward, lost traction and began sliding backward into the cars behind them. As did the second row. As did the third row.

Screw this! I threw the car into gear, cut the wheel left, and manically upshifted until the torque was enough to allow the tires to grip the road and give me traction. Then I gunned it, snow and slush flying wildly, and "boated" my way around the growing junkpile by using the left-turn-only lane and getting through the intersection. When I looked in my rear view mirror, I was the only car that had made it through the light.

// csb, I know
// Burlington, MA does a shiatty job of snow removal
 
2012-05-17 06:56:22 AM  
Try this and then get back to me about how great standard transmissions are. And yes, I know from experience.

Sit for 15 seconds, put in clutch, move 10 feet, release clutch. Repeat for 3 hours.

Worst part is I had to sit in New Jersey for an extra 3 hours.

(GWB approach from new jersey)

farm2.staticflickr.com">
 
2012-05-17 07:00:39 AM  
The article is inane, and the fundamental question its asking is insipid. And, some of the facts are wrong. And it's whiny and stupid.

It certainly sounds like Salon.
 
2012-05-17 07:01:12 AM  
ok, ok, I know.

should have said:

Sit for 15 seconds, release clutch, move 10 feet, push clutch in. Repeat for 3 hours.
 
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