In search of an automatic

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fungus
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Re: In search of an automatic

Postby fungus » Mon Aug 07, 2017 8:17 pm

sussex2 wrote:You say your relatives are elderly.
I wonder if introducing them to modern technology may be a mistake. It may be hard for them to adjust to it.
Would it not be better to buy a 'normal' automatic at a reasonable price and put up with higher road tax.
They have also been used to a small car and newer cars, even the likes of the 500 are big by comparison (hard to see the corners?).
I could suggest something along the lines of a Citroen Nemo Multispace (comes in Peugeot and Fiat versions as well) if they want to sit higher. The cars come with an auto options though what type I'm not sure.


You raise a good point there. Having driven manuals for 48 years, I struggle with any kind of auto. I go for the cluch in stop start traffic, and generally feel that the car's controling me. If I get an older driver who has not driven an auto before asking for advice on driving an auto, I ask why they want one when they have been driving a manual for however many years. The reason is quite often that they worry about using the clutch because the clutch on their old car is now feeling heavy as they are getting older. My advice is to try the different types available but not to be pressured by the salesman who will probably tell them that an auto is much easier to drive, and make their mind up on their experience. I also point out that many small modern manual cars have very light controls. The other, and I think very important point, is muscle memory. What is going to happen in an emergency? Unless a driver is used to driving many different types of cars, they will revert to what they are familiar with.

Nigel.

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GTR1400MAN
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Re: In search of an automatic

Postby GTR1400MAN » Mon Aug 07, 2017 8:29 pm

fungus wrote:
sussex2 wrote:You say your relatives are elderly.
I wonder if introducing them to modern technology may be a mistake. It may be hard for them to adjust to it.
Would it not be better to buy a 'normal' automatic at a reasonable price and put up with higher road tax.
They have also been used to a small car and newer cars, even the likes of the 500 are big by comparison (hard to see the corners?).
I could suggest something along the lines of a Citroen Nemo Multispace (comes in Peugeot and Fiat versions as well) if they want to sit higher. The cars come with an auto options though what type I'm not sure.


You raise a good point there. Having driven manuals for 48 years, I struggle with any kind of auto. I go for the cluch in stop start traffic, and generally feel that the car's controling me. If I get an older driver who has not driven an auto before asking for advice on driving an auto, I ask why they want one when they have been driving a manual for however many years. The reason is quite often that they worry about using the clutch because the clutch on their old car is now feeling heavy as they are getting older. My advice is to try the different types available but not to be pressured by the salesman who will probably tell them that an auto is much easier to drive, and make their mind up on their experience. I also point out that many small modern manual cars have very light controls. The other, and I think very important point, is muscle memory. What is going to happen in an emergency? Unless a driver is used to driving many different types of cars, they will revert to what they are familiar with.

Nigel.

This isn't a case of moving from manual to auto, but moving from auto to semi-auto. Both driven with one foot, the right (unless you are one of the 'kart drivers' that are on this forum :) ). The difference is in how they feel to drive and possibly their reliability.

In any case we are off to test drive both the Citroen and the Fiat. The test drive may put him off them. We will see.
Mike Roberts

sussex2
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Re: In search of an automatic

Postby sussex2 » Tue Aug 08, 2017 8:37 am

The 1.3 turbo diesel on the Nemo is a good little engine with plenty of pull. It's a Fiat engine.

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GTR1400MAN
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Re: In search of an automatic

Postby GTR1400MAN » Tue Aug 08, 2017 7:35 pm

GTR1400MAN wrote:In any case we are off to test drive both the Citroen and the Fiat. The test drive may put him off them. We will see.

He loved the Citroen C3 Picasso mini-MPV. (Fiat was dismissed as being an oil burner)

Yes, I could feel the gear changes when pressing on (compared to my Clio's DCT) but it was nowhere near as awful as some of the online reviews suggest. Give a couple of month's learning how/when it changes gear would allow you to lift a little a change points, smoothing things further.

A nice little (big) car and at 3.5 years old the big hit depreciation had halved its price but with only 19k miles on it. A result all round.
Mike Roberts

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exportmanuk
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Re: In search of an automatic

Postby exportmanuk » Tue Aug 08, 2017 8:00 pm

Hi

We are just changing a C3 auto for a Mini auto partly because its three years old partly because my wife spent some time driving my BMW1 and started to appreciate a fluid flywheel. The robotic clutch cars are far more difficult to control creep for accurate positioning such as parking in a garage. Have to say we have had no mechanical problems with the C3 or C4 I had both with robotic clutches ( also part X after 3 years) but I suspect that the clutch would not last as long as a manual one as frequently experience burnt clutch smell when reversing up our rather steep drive. Some of the larger Citroen have fluid clutches.
Andrew Melton
Manchester 500

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GTR1400MAN
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Re: In search of an automatic

Postby GTR1400MAN » Tue Aug 08, 2017 10:49 pm

Glad to hear you had no problems with yours.

Feathering the throttle in any of these robotic clutched cars, whether one or two clutched like my Renaulsport, will lead to wear (maybe excessive). You really do need to drive them like a manual at slow speed. I think this is where an awful number of the complaints come from. Dealers sell them as automatics and don't explain they are in fact semi-automatic and you have to drive them differently. So many will continue to creep for miles in urban traffic or hill start/creep as they would in a true torque converter auto. I can smell them from here.
Mike Roberts

Gareth
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Re: In search of an automatic

Postby Gareth » Wed Aug 09, 2017 4:52 am

GTR1400MAN wrote:Feathering the throttle in any of these robotic clutched cars [...] will lead to wear (maybe excessive).

Not sure I understand the point - please will you explain further?
there is only the road, nothing but the road ...

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GTR1400MAN
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Re: In search of an automatic

Postby GTR1400MAN » Wed Aug 09, 2017 8:25 am

Gareth wrote:
GTR1400MAN wrote:Feathering the throttle in any of these robotic clutched cars [...] will lead to wear (maybe excessive).

Not sure I understand the point - please will you explain further?

OK, here's a couple of situations .

Waiting at a T-Junction to join a major road. The joining road you are on is slightly up hill. In a normal traditional auto drivers will/can (and is common to) 'hover' waiting for a gap to exit with just a minimum application of the accelerator. While not elegant, it causes no damage. However you wouldn't (or shouldn't) do it in a manual car and likewise for a semi-auto/DCT. Use the hand-brake or hill assist (if it has it) and use the brakes for their intended use.

Urban crawl at rush hour. Long lines of very slowly moving traffic. A normal auto will creep along in this situation. In a manual you wouldn't set a slipping point on the clutch and drive like that continually, instead you'd be alternating between clutch applied and released. Unfortunately a semi-auto/DCT on a partial throttle will do just that while creeping: slip the clutch continually. Long up-hill creeps are particularly bad. Letting some space open in front and then moving forward in stepping stone jumps gives the clutch an easier life ... even if it may look a bit odd to following vehicles.

Given that all the semi-autos have dry clutches (and some DCTs) these sorts of situations can cause excessive wear and heat. The clutch can then become grabby in urban crawls and the car less than smooth until moving freely again and it has cooled. My DCT warns about these situations in the manual, but how many new owners who have driven true autos for years would even read that chapter?

Especially if it has been sold to them as an auto by the dealership! :o :evil:
Mike Roberts

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exportmanuk
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Re: In search of an automatic

Postby exportmanuk » Wed Aug 09, 2017 10:22 am

GTR1400MAN wrote:
Urban crawl at rush hour. Long lines of very slowly moving traffic. A normal auto will creep along in this situation. In a manual you wouldn't set a slipping point on the clutch and drive like that continually, instead you'd be alternating between clutch applied and released. Unfortunately a semi-auto/DCT on a partial throttle will do just that while creeping: slip the clutch continually. Long up-hill creeps are particularly bad. Letting some space open in front and then moving forward in stepping stone jumps gives the clutch an easier life ... even if it may look a bit odd to following vehicles.

Given that all the semi-autos have dry clutches (and some DCTs) these sorts of situations can cause excessive wear and heat. The clutch can then become grabby in urban crawls and the car less than smooth until moving freely again and it has cooled. My DCT warns about these situations in the manual, but how many new owners who have driven true autos for years would even read that chapter?

Especially if it has been sold to them as an auto by the dealership! :o :evil:


Add to that stop start tech and they can be a particular pain at roundabouts. Have to say we both adapted quite quickly I have had Full autos for years before I bought the C4 it was a rush purchase as my previous car had been rear ended by a taxi and written off. The C3 was my wifes first "Auto" thought she had driven mine frequently.

Just had a thought Mazda cars are proper autos we test drove a Mazda 2 but both of us preferred the drive of the Mini Plus the Mazda dealer in Oldham made us both want to :bash: him
Andrew Melton
Manchester 500

waremark
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Re: In search of an automatic

Postby waremark » Tue Aug 15, 2017 12:03 am

"Given that all the semi-autos have dry clutches (and some DCTs)"

Not sure what you mean there? Isn't a dual-clutch a semi-auto? My dual clutch M3 had wet clutches, as does a Ferrari I have been driving recently. Dual clutch cars and indeed single clutch automated manual cars vary widely in how easy they are to manoeuver.


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