Should I keep stick shift car?

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galectin
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Re: Should I keep stick shift car?

Post by galectin »

HomerJ wrote: Sat Jun 05, 2021 7:47 pm
But the best reason to keep it is to teach your kids how to drive a stick (if you have kids).
This is a good skill for them to have in case they ever need to drive a vehicle with a manual transmission. I have seen news stories of attempted car thieves being thwarted because they tried to steal a car with a manual transmission.

Also, about 20 years ago when my daughter was in high school she was held in awe by her male friends for knowing how to drive a manual transmission. They all learned on automatics, which was what their families had.
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sawhorse
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Re: Should I keep stick shift car?

Post by sawhorse »

Thanks for all your responses!
brokendirtdart wrote: Sat Jun 05, 2021 4:56 pm Generally speaking, a manual transmission in the US is a millennial and onward anti theft device. If you spend a bit of time in long term parking, it may be worth holding on to for just that reason.
Yes, it's in a parking garage.
plog wrote: Sat Jun 05, 2021 4:28 pm
No. Get an automatic.

The week before this undefined hypothetical vacation to a foreign city that has poor public transit and mandates manual transmission rental cars; you can rent a manual car stateside and practice.
Is it possible to rent a stick shift in the United States? I've never seen one at a rental center.
investorpeter wrote: Sun Jun 06, 2021 11:57 am Lol, I can relate! Learned to drive stick shift in Manhattan, NYC. I still have flashbacks of sitting at red lights, counting down the seconds to green, rehearsing in my mind how to get into 1st gear within the 0.1 nanosecond it will take before the guy behind me starts honking. Oh and the horror of stalling out on a green light, the deafening silence of bewilderment of the cars behind me, before the cacophany of blaring horns begins.
Yes, exactly!

The worst are pedestrians. One time a pedestrian darted in the middle of a road, so I slammed on the brakes. Then I stalled trying to get into first after the pedestrian crossed.

I also hate turns at busy crosswalks.
galectin wrote: Sun Jun 06, 2021 1:37 pm
HomerJ wrote: Sat Jun 05, 2021 7:47 pm
But the best reason to keep it is to teach your kids how to drive a stick (if you have kids).
This is a good skill for them to have in case they ever need to drive a vehicle with a manual transmission. I have seen news stories of attempted car thieves being thwarted because they tried to steal a car with a manual transmission.

Also, about 20 years ago when my daughter was in high school she was held in awe by her male friends for knowing how to drive a manual transmission. They all learned on automatics, which was what their families had.
I'm on the old end of the millennial generation, so I learned to drive around the same time as your daughter. At the time a sizeable minority, maybe 15-20%, of my classmates could drive stick. It seems that stick shift popularity dropped precipitously in the following decade.
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jabberwockOG
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Re: Should I keep stick shift car?

Post by jabberwockOG »

Manual trans an obsolete and pointless anachronism at this time. Get rid of it while you still can. This is a good year to sell a car, but maybe not so great time to buy a car.
surfstar
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Re: Should I keep stick shift car?

Post by surfstar »

40 y/o and trading in my last stick shift this month (well, 'timing' the used car market and selling to Carvana for quite a high price*) - moving on to a PHEV. The full-speed radar cruise is such a great feature for traffic and longer drives.
Of all the times to sell a used car, it doesn't get much better than right now. Also great time to buy a EV/PHEV replacement - the tax credits and other rebates will make them a better purchase over ICE/hybrids, even in the current market.

Travel to a country that does RHD and rents sticks - that'll keep your on your toes :D

*2016 Golf Sportwagen with a 5 speed stick! Bought new for $18.5k + TTL, 64 months and 72k miles later I'm getting $11,947 for it without effort.
mffl
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Re: Should I keep stick shift car?

Post by mffl »

galectin wrote: Sun Jun 06, 2021 1:37 pm This is a good skill for them to have in case they ever need to drive a vehicle with a manual transmission. I have seen news stories of attempted car thieves being thwarted because they tried to steal a car with a manual transmission.
Correct, and I'd hate for my kid to end up on the news like that. Better that I teach them how to drive a stick and they can steal whatever car they want. :D
newyorker
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Re: Should I keep stick shift car?

Post by newyorker »

Sell the car and move on. I have stick shift and automatic cars but use the stick shift just for leisurely purpose. Stick shift in traffic is the worst thing.
tibbitts
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Re: Should I keep stick shift car?

Post by tibbitts »

eric321 wrote: Sun Jun 06, 2021 7:05 am Newer stick shifts are easier than older stick shifts with hill start assist.a stick shift transmission lasts longer and is the bogglehead thing to do.
I don't believe manual transmissions last longer, but that's just based on my own experience although it depends if you count the clutch, bearing, etc. as part of the transmission. Automatics have wear that occurs with the built-in clutches, but manual have synchronizers that wear as well. The durability of a manual may have more to do with driving habits, while the durability of an automatic may have more to do with a combination of temperature combined with driving habits.
Small Savanna
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Re: Should I keep stick shift car?

Post by Small Savanna »

I had an '85 Prelude with a five speed manual, stopped driving it in '95. Then a series of automatic transmission cars. This January I bought a '73 VW Super Beetle with a manual transmission as a fun/project car, and the only trick was figuring out how to get it in reverse. Other than that, the remembering was almost instant.
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wander
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Re: Should I keep stick shift car?

Post by wander »

I switched from manual stick shift to automatic and never looked back. It is not extremely difficult to learn a stick shift (actually, nobody taught me how to drive it in the first place) so you can't really forget it.
Mudpuppy
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Re: Should I keep stick shift car?

Post by Mudpuppy »

vitaflo wrote: Sat Jun 05, 2021 4:45 pm That said now that I can WFH and don’t commute I really wish I had a stick shift again. Plus with all the cars being stolen in my neck of the woods a stick is a great anti-theft device.
brokendirtdart wrote: Sat Jun 05, 2021 4:56 pm Generally speaking, a manual transmission in the US is a millennial and onward anti theft device. If you spend a bit of time in long term parking, it may be worth holding on to for just that reason.
Angst wrote: Sat Jun 05, 2021 5:02 pm One good thing about having a manual transmission vehicle is that no one's ever going to steal it, because they won't know how to drive it. :D
Unfortunately, it's also becoming increasingly difficult to find mechanics who properly know how to drive and service a manual transmission. I'm constantly having to remind them on check-in that I have a manual transmission car. And the last two times I had the car in for service, the seat was moved so far forward that I'm not even sure how a man with longer legs than me was able to operate the clutch. He must have been stomping down on the poor thing. I've never used valet service on this vehicle out of a similar concern for the ability (or inability as the case may be) of the valets to properly drive a stick shift.

Back to the OP's question, I personally make it a game of "how long can I coast in 1st before I have to brake" when in stop-and-go traffic. But for the most part, I try to time my trips to the low-traffic parts of the day so I minimize the stop-and-go traffic. My clutch knee will start complaining if I really get into the thick of traffic for too many days in a row, so I can fully understand the OP's desire to get something more comfortable if stop-and-go traffic is their daily commute. Since the OP can afford an automatic, go for it.
bacon4retirement
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Re: Should I keep stick shift car?

Post by bacon4retirement »

Although would not say I forgot how to drive stick, I certainly got rusty with long breaks without driving; I would stall my parent's stick shift at least within the first week home from college each summer.

Automatics are really handy if you ever have a sprained/broken leg.
Van
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Re: Should I keep stick shift car?

Post by Van »

Yes, keep it. It is virtually theft proof. Most thieves are young and don't know how to drive a stick shift!!!
palaheel
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Re: Should I keep stick shift car?

Post by palaheel »

I understand wanting to get rid of a stick for painful traffic. But just get an automatic with some pickup. I've never seen a small car with adequate acceleration and an automatic, but it's been decades since I investigated them.
Nothing to say, really.
Makefile
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Re: Should I keep stick shift car?

Post by Makefile »

ClevrChico wrote: Sun Jun 06, 2021 1:15 pm I took a seven year break from having a manual transmission, and I didn't forget. (And I've been driving stick ever since, because it's the best! :D :D :D :D )

I do realize I'm on borrowed time until electric cars takeover, with no transmissions.
That's kind of the redeeming thing, I think. Electrics can also get rid of that "runaway" effect an auto has due to lack of engine braking, and use it to recharge the battery. So in a way the conventional auto is also on borrowed time just a longer time frame.

I also wonder about the car manufacturers eventually forcing everyone into SUVs. Hasn't Detroit already done this?
Makefile
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Re: Should I keep stick shift car?

Post by Makefile »

sawhorse wrote: Sun Jun 06, 2021 2:35 pm Is it possible to rent a stick shift in the United States? I've never seen one at a rental center.
I believe it was at one time, but it's probably like trying to find a "smoking" rental car at this point.
Mudpuppy
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Re: Should I keep stick shift car?

Post by Mudpuppy »

sawhorse wrote: Sun Jun 06, 2021 2:35 pm
investorpeter wrote: Sun Jun 06, 2021 11:57 am Lol, I can relate! Learned to drive stick shift in Manhattan, NYC. I still have flashbacks of sitting at red lights, counting down the seconds to green, rehearsing in my mind how to get into 1st gear within the 0.1 nanosecond it will take before the guy behind me starts honking. Oh and the horror of stalling out on a green light, the deafening silence of bewilderment of the cars behind me, before the cacophany of blaring horns begins.
Yes, exactly!

The worst are pedestrians. One time a pedestrian darted in the middle of a road, so I slammed on the brakes. Then I stalled trying to get into first after the pedestrian crossed.

I also hate turns at busy crosswalks.
I'm a little confused here. Perhaps my margin of "when it's safe to turn" is calibrated too far into the "old lady driving" range, but I keep my car in neutral until I'm ready to turn, so I'm not quite sure why busy crosswalks would be a concern. Is it just issues with getting into gear without stalling? My dad spent a long time teaching me how to feel the friction in the clutch so I have very little issue with getting into first gear and I very rarely stall when in first gear, unless my clutch leg has a spasm at just the wrong time (see below for the old injury story that occasionally causes spasms).
bacon4retirement wrote: Sun Jun 06, 2021 7:05 pm Automatics are really handy if you ever have a sprained/broken leg.
Having driven a manual transmission car with a walking fracture (no cast, just crutches) on my clutch leg, I can tell you that it is possible to drive a stick shift with that sort of injury, but it is not advisable, nor is it very pleasant. I did get to skip the "gas pedal" exercises at physical therapy at least, since I was getting plenty of that sort of motion operating the clutch.
RudyS
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Re: Should I keep stick shift car?

Post by RudyS »

Watty wrote: Sat Jun 05, 2021 4:47 pm
John Z wrote: Sat Jun 05, 2021 3:51 pm I think it's like riding a bicycle or swimming, once you know how to do it you don't forget.
+1

I probably had not driven a stick in 10 or 15 years and I ended up in Ireland in a rental car driving on the left side of the road. I had to shift with my left hand instead of my right hand like in the US and how to drive a stick came right back to me.
Similar experience for me, except in UK. It was hard at first to deal with roundabouts that went the "wrong" way!
DinkinFlicka
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Re: Should I keep stick shift car?

Post by DinkinFlicka »

Has anyone tried buying a used stick shift car during this time of inflated car prices? I'm in the market and it looks like my local dealers are still inflating the price of manual cars, even though demand is much lower (one car has been sitting since March). Wondering if there's more room to get them to lower the price given the lower demand or if dealerships will just wait it out.
Last edited by DinkinFlicka on Thu Jun 10, 2021 10:06 am, edited 1 time in total.
FoolMeOnce
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Re: Should I keep stick shift car?

Post by FoolMeOnce »

You want to torture yourself every day on the off-chance that on some future vacation, you might have to drive a manual for a week? Do some cost-benefit analysis there.

Plus, you can rent an automatic just about everywhere, though sometimes for a premium price. And, as just about everyone here has said, you won't forget.
SethJane42
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Re: Should I keep stick shift car?

Post by SethJane42 »

Once learned, one never forgets how to drive a stick. I drove a stick Toyota pickup for 15 years, then went to an automatic Corolla. I still rest my hand on the stick. My left foot has nothing to do. If you hate your car and have the money to get something different, then create a new reality for yourself.
EagertoLearnMore
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Re: Should I keep stick shift car?

Post by EagertoLearnMore »

Do you ever leave your car for someone to use in case of emergency? For instance, if you have children and parents babysit. Can they drive the car in case of emergency? That may be a reason to switch to automatic.
KyleAAA
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Re: Should I keep stick shift car?

Post by KyleAAA »

No sense driving a car you hate. You won’t forget. Every clutch is slightly different so it always takes a few starts to find that sweet spot in a new car, anyway.
joebruin77
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Re: Should I keep stick shift car?

Post by joebruin77 »

I used to own a Subaru WRX with a 6-speed manual transmission and to this day, I still miss that car. But I miss it for carving canyon roads, not sitting in LA traffic. I now drive a Tesla Performance Model 3 with Enhanced Autopilot. The Tesla is the perfect antidote for traffic fatigue. When I sit in bumper to bumper LA traffic, the car drives itself. Of course, I "stand by" in case I need to take over. But for the most part, it is so much less fatiguing to drive in LA traffic.
rich126
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Re: Should I keep stick shift car?

Post by rich126 »

I drove a stick shift for about 30 years. Initially due to it being cheaper and providing better gas mileage. I doubt either is true now. Driving in traffic was a bit annoying but never really bothered me. I was a bit concerned that I might need surgery on my left foot and then I couldn't drive a stick. Despite not having one since 2013, I still often reach for the shift and almost wish I still had one.
sureshoe
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Re: Should I keep stick shift car?

Post by sureshoe »

I really miss driving a stick for no reason other than just dinking around in traffic.
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bertilak
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Re: Should I keep stick shift car?

Post by bertilak »

Silverado wrote: Sat Jun 05, 2021 4:30 pm Yep, been there! Older car with the double wide brake pedal got me good.
HAH!

That's why I failed my first driving test. I never drove anything except my high school's driver's ed car -- a pathetic 6-cylinder, manual shift, with manual steering and brakes -- a Rambler, I think. I used my father's car for the driving test. It was a powerful, turbo charged, 8-Cyl Oldsmobile Jetfire with power brakes and an automatic transmission. I never drove it before so squealed the tires starting off and at the first corner I slammed my left foot down on the left end of that power brake pedal. Good thing we had seat belts. I didn't get past that corner, The DMV guy drove the car back from there and that was it.

I blame my father. He wouldn't let me drive his car "until I got more practice." A catch 22 or something like that. I don't know what he was thinking, but I got yelled at for being an oaf and wasting everyone's time!
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desconhecido
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Re: Should I keep stick shift car?

Post by desconhecido »

Drove nothing but stick shift cars for the first 55 years of driving, except infrequently for rentals or borrowed cars. After the first year or so never had a problem with stalling or driving in traffic (including Miami, Chicago, Houston, NYC, Paris (the one in France), and numerous cities and towns in Italy). The worst traffic I ever experienced was in Paris and AT cars in France were virtually non-existent at the time. Maybe still, don't know. Didn't notice a high number of French people with bad left knees.

These days, with computer control and 6-10 speed AT, the efficiency advantage of the MT is gone and when I went to buy an American made truck in 2018, to get MT would require a diesel and about $10k more money. Ram with regular cab and 8 foot bed and it gets about 25 mpg partly, I suppose, because I drive like an old man. Funny how that works. Actually, I think it's the best vehicle I've ever owned -- by far.
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