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Old 04-29-2015, 07:29 AM   #31
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My wife has always driven manual transmission cars. She got a good deal on her last one, a 2007 Subaru because no one really like to drive them. I would have loved a manual in my last truck, a 2008 Chevy 2500HD but the dealer told me that GM doesn't offer them anymore.

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Old 04-29-2015, 07:37 AM   #32
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Last summer we were trying to get back to KY from Tybee Island GA. It was the weekend before July 4th but it was a short week and apparently half the population on the East coast decided to start their traveling early
We went from speed limit to dead stop to creep along several times. My drive time increased from scheduled 8 hours to almost 11 buy the time we reached our stopping point.
I would NOT have wanted a clutch for those grueling hours and miles of interstate!

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Old 04-29-2015, 07:40 AM   #33
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Lack of Manual trans on new trucks

Originally Posted by KyDan View Post
I would NOT have wanted a clutch for those grueling hours and miles of interstate!

My disdain for clutches was solidified on a snowy/icy night where a 1 hour drive took 3 in my in-laws manual Civic.
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Old 04-29-2015, 07:53 AM   #34
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In the eighties I had a new ford truck with a manual trans and at every campground I went you could smell burning clutch by the time I got the camper backed into place. I have driven manuals since the late fifties and still have one of my cars with a manual today. For me an automatic is the only thing to pull a camper with.
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Old 04-29-2015, 07:57 AM   #35
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Originally Posted by JLeising View Post
Interestingly, believe stick shift still dominate in Europe. Glad I could drive a stick ten years ago when I was frequently over there and renting cars.

Same applies here. My first car I special ordered in order to get a stick shift, despite only ever having driven a stick once before in my life. I figured it was the easiest way to force me to learn, by not having a choice.

About a 1/2 a year later I got a job where I had to travel to Europe a lot and all the rentals over there were manual. I was very thankful I forced myself though that learning curve weekend and got used to driving a stick. Up until that point I was protective of my car and was scared to do that so I would just stop in neutral before shifting back to 1st. So I then proceeded to use the rentals to fine-tune my driving for things like downshifting, getting it into the upper power bands, etc...

Since then I had always driven a manual, and when I started dating DW I made sure she knew how to drive one too. But when I went looking for my current Ram they just weren't available anymore and I was forced back into an auto.

It's a shame really. Yes, auto's are getting better these days, but there is one thing I always appreciated about my manuals. Since so few people in North America drive them, I always viewed the manual as being a form of theft deterrent. I figured teens looking for a joy ride were going to bypass my vehicle cause they wouldn't know how to drive it.

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Old 04-29-2015, 07:58 AM   #36
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My new F250 has a manual mode. Next best thing...

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Old 04-29-2015, 07:59 AM   #37
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At work we have an antique truck where the clutch and brake are reversed compared to what is standard today. Considering I only drive a manual once in a blue moon as it is, driving that thing takes me a minute or two to reboot my brain to drive it.
Overall I'll take an automatic just about any day, towing or not. Only exception is such as old coot says, hot rodding.

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Old 04-29-2015, 09:24 AM   #38
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Taught DD to drive on my old Jeep. She was the mail girl at a GM div. while putting herself through college and never knew what vehicle she would be using. Manuals didn't scare her.
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Old 04-29-2015, 09:35 AM   #39
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Another reason folks don't know how to is the simple lack of available vehicles to learn on. Both my step kids had six different vehicles to drive when they were learning, my truck is the only manual in the bunch and being big as it is scared them. They've since learned how, not much practice but they have the concept.

The opportunity to learn simply isn't there.
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Old 04-29-2015, 11:07 AM   #40
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I have only had 3 daily drivers in my life, all were/are 5-sp manuals:
'88 Mustang (90hp 4cyl) (1987 - 1995)
'89 Probe GT (190 ft-lb turbo ) (1995 - 2005)
'04 Mazda3 (160hp 4-cyl = not bad) (2005-current)

I love driving a sporty car with a stick every day to work and running errands. That said, I'm not interested in a manual for a tow vehicle, especially if it doubles as the family vehicle.

Why manual tow vehicles are rare?
a. Most people don't want to drive a stick.
b. Most that DO like to drive a stick (like me) only want that in a sporty car, not a utility vehicle.
c. Automatics have come a long way, and the torque convertor greatly increases their durability under high loads. More heavy rigs are now getting automatics.
d. Manuals that are strong enough to tow significant loads need a very strong clutch, which is not fun to drive.

thebrakeman ('70), DW ('71), DD ('99), DD ('01), DD ('05)
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