Automatics better than Manuals? …really?

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You would think that Jeremy Clarkson, a world-famous driving enthusiast, is a hardcore fan of the 3-pedal manual transmission.

The logic is there. But that doesn’t make it true.

The former Top Gear host, never afraid to stir up controversy, has gone ahead and called the majority of Brits as “mad” for driving manuals. Clarkson goes so far as to compare willing manual drivers to people "who choose not to have a washing machine because they prefer to clean their clothes in the local river."

His words are published in The Daily Sun. So he can never take them back.

Why did you do it, Jeremy? Why?

As upset as we are, we have to admit that he makes some good points.

In the last few years, automatic transmissions have made huge improvements in the up shifts speeds and in most cases improve fuel economy.

And the truth is that some of the world’s top performance brands have ditched the manual. Ferrari hasn’t sold a manual in years. The same is true for Lamborghini. The Porsche 911 GTR also replaced the manual transmission in its latest generation.

And the trend has trickled down to lower-end performance cars, the automatic is usually the go-to option – think Volkswagen GTI.

Here’s the place to add that Clarkson does recognize certain advantages of the manual transmission, calling it “sublime” and saying that the perfect upshift at the redline makes him “go all tingly”.

What would you say? Are automatics better than manuals?

Please rant in the comments below.

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