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Old 04-12-2009, 06:17 PM   #1
VenomZ302
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Second thoughts... HELP?

So I was talking to my dad this weekend. He's basically where I get my interest in cars and we were talking about the Camaro. He knows I'm planning on getting the LS3 model, but as we were talking, he seemed to be trying to talk me into getting the L99.

His reasoning is that, despite knowing how to drive a manual and owning a Porsche 911 (with a manual, of course), he gets tired of having to shift himself. This may be part of why he doesn't drive his 911 much. He also would consider it frustrating if he ever had to get someone else to drive his car, especially because most people he knows would drive automatics and either don't know how to drive a manual or aren't very good at it.

I'll admit it. I've never owned a manual, but I can drive one with a bit of a learning curve. I've got lots of questions about the right way to do things with a manual transmission and I think I'd genuinely like to have a manual Camaro.

However, I don't know that I'll get tired of it and I don't knew if I'll like it every day. On the flip side, maybe I'll love it. I also don't know whether the desire to drive a manual Camaro is from the assumption that a fast car should have a manual transmission or if there's more to it.

Thoughts on how I can figure this one out before my order's pulled? Thanks in advance.
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Old 04-12-2009, 06:22 PM   #2
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I made the switch 20,000 miles ago and I don't regret it. It's rare that I find it annoying enough that I wish I was in an automatic. It does happen sometimes, but if I only had an automatic then wishing I had a manual would happen every day.

How do you feel about it? Have you always wanted to drive manual?

What kind of traffic do you drive in? Part of the reason it works so well for me is that my driving is mostly rural/small town roads and low-traffic highway. When I get into the city I enjoy it but if I drove in the city every day I might not. When it comes to traffic jams, though, nothing is fun to drive.
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she really underestimates the damage i would do to her reproductive organs
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Old 04-12-2009, 06:40 PM   #3
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My first manual was a silverado a 94 I think, now thats no sports car but was still just as fun to drive. I bought it not knowing how to drive stick at all, I stalled out maybe 3 times, was really nervous trying to get to work one first day. Never used a parking lot never burned up a clutch. For different reasons had to go back to an auto(low on cash and received stepmoms old saturn free of charge), but told myself if I ever purchased something new or used it was going to be a manual. I currently drive a civic si 6 speed obviously and i love it and would never I repeat NEVER have another automatic. Sports car or other I will always pick a manual. Only time I ever wish I didn't have it was when i sprained my left ankle and maybe when I am stuck in bumper to bumper traffic, luckily I don't have either of those happening very often. And nothing is better than keeping it in low gear right as you punch out of that bumper to bumper traffic and winding each gear out as you escape down the road. I haven't gotten in any manual/auto discussions and I don't want to start any fights but I am a believer a sports car isn't a sports car unless its a stick. If everything goes well camaro will hold me over till I can get a vette (Z06) down the road and I sure wouldn't think of gettting an automatic vette thats almost sickiening. For me there wasn't a choice for camaro either as far as I am concerned shouldn't even offer auto, well ok thats not true but its definitely not for me. Especially since there is additional cost involved.
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Old 04-12-2009, 06:57 PM   #4
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It's nothing about how to drive a stick. He said auto so give the man the auto. Resale value higher go look at used cars with and without auto.

Here is simulating a stick in the city. Find a large brick wall. Now...
walk up real close to the wall about 4 feet. Ok..

Stand there for an hour while just shaking your left leg back and forth like your on elimination in survivor.

This is the joy of drive to work and what not in a big stupid city with spanish owned toll roads.

That's what a stick is to me now. It's not the car or the person.. It's the people.. they are stupid.. not the one.
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Old 04-12-2009, 07:06 PM   #5
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jpsuper, I have to respectfully disagree. I, too, have stayed out of these auto/manual discussions in the past, but I get a little worked up when people make comments like "a sports car isn't a sports car unless it's a stick."

So you're telling me the new Ferarri F430 with the sequential gear box isn't a sports car? It pulls off upshifts in 25 milliseconds. That's .025 seconds. I doubt you, or anyone else on the planet, could even come close to that.

Venom, PLEASE don't make your decision based off opinions like that. That's analogous to saying "a pick up truck isn't a REAL pick up truck unless it's lifted with 44" tires." A lifted truck doesn't suit everyone's wants or needs. People who tell you you're less of a man or your car is less of a car because you drive an automatic are compensating for something and looking for affirmation of their "coolness" from others because they are, in their mind, in an elite group who possess the oh-so-rare talent of being able to drive a stick.

That being said, a stick can make you feel like you're in more control of the car. It gives you faster response in acceleration because you don't have to wait for the transmission to downshift, but this shouldn't be a problem in the Camaro's TapShift auto because you can select the gear you want. It also gets more power to the wheels, but not enough for the average joe to notice.

It can also make you look like a fool. If you're starting on a steep hill at a stop light with a car behind you, and you don't let the clutch out fast enough and you roll into the car behind you, you look like a jackass. If you let it out too fast and stall, you look like a jackass. If you're not particularly smooth at starting and shifting, your passengers will make fun of you. Probably not to your face, but definitely in their heads. Your girlfriend would probably appreciate NOT having her head jerked back and forth between gear changes and at stop lights.

There are pros and cons. It all comes down to PERSONAL preference. Don't listen to your father or anyone on this forum. Go and test drive both versions. Or find friends with manuals. Better yet, try and talk your dad into letting you drive his Porsche (SWEET!). Drive it around for a couple hours and see what you think. My Z-71 is a manual. I grew up with it and that's what I'm used to. I don't even notice shifting in stop and go traffic. The only time it's a hassle is when I'm eating or talking on the phone (I know, I'm the cause of half the wrecks in the world, I'm sorry!). But I know a lot of people who hate being bothered with shifting, while I know others who enjoy it. I say get a reasonable amount of seat time in a manual and THEN make your decision. Because it's just that. YOUR decision.
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Old 04-12-2009, 07:08 PM   #6
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I agree with "theholycow" above. It all depends upon what type of traffic you deal with on a day to day basis. I considered the manual as well BUT I live inside the capitol beltway in the DC metro area. DC rates in the top 5 for the worst commute in the nation. My daily drive is bumper to bumper madness! There is no way frekkin' way I would drive a manual. If you are in an area that has hardly no traffic and is mostly highway then go for it.
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Old 04-12-2009, 07:25 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by UsedTaHaveA68 View Post
That being said, a stick can make you feel like you're in more control of the car. It gives you faster response in acceleration because you don't have to wait for the transmission to downshift, but this shouldn't be a problem in the Camaro's TapShift auto because you can select the gear you want.
I never had any problem selecting gears with any of the non-paddle automatics I've driven. My 1987 Cadillac, 1997 Pontiac, and 2002 GMC had/have D-3-2-1 positions which are great for downshifting in advance for instant acceleration response. Other automatics I've driven had them, too. My 1980 Buick doesn't have four positions, but it doesn't have four gears either. I've never damaged a transmission in >500,000 miles of driving (including 180,000 on the GMC's 4L60E, a tranny known for breakage).

Still, the manual has distinct advantages: it's more fun, less maintenance (unless you're tough on the clutch), cheaper to repair, more obedient, and can be more efficient. I can't remember...is it cheaper to buy on the Camaro, or are they priced the same?
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she really underestimates the damage i would do to her reproductive organs
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Old 04-12-2009, 07:28 PM   #8
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I believe the auto is a $1200 option. So yes, one more pro in the manual box.
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Old 04-12-2009, 07:36 PM   #9
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With the manual it just seems your in more control of the car and having more fun.
Now if I had a brutal commute I might have to have the auto. At least the auto will
have tapshift. That's pretty sweet. I'm getting the manual, my wife's getting the auto next year when her lease is up.
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Old 04-12-2009, 07:46 PM   #10
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The Auto also has Variable Valve Timing and Active Fuel Management, whether these things interest you or not...
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Old 04-12-2009, 07:48 PM   #11
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The Auto also has Variable Valve Timing ...
That's only on the V6 model.
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Old 04-12-2009, 08:42 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by UsedTaHaveA68 View Post
Venom, PLEASE don't make your decision based off opinions like that.
Nah, I rarely (if ever) make decisions based purely on the opinions of others. That was the point of this:
Quote:
Originally Posted by VenomZ302 View Post
Thoughts on how I can figure this one out before my order's pulled?
Quote:
Originally Posted by UsedTaHaveA68 View Post
I say get a reasonable amount of seat time in a manual and THEN make your decision. Because it's just that. YOUR decision.
And that's probably the best answer for me.

Quote:
Originally Posted by theholycow View Post
What kind of traffic do you drive in? Part of the reason it works so well for me is that my driving is mostly rural/small town roads and low-traffic highway. When I get into the city I enjoy it but if I drove in the city every day I might not. When it comes to traffic jams, though, nothing is fun to drive.
I live in a city, but the traffic's not really that horrible very often. My main commute is a couple of miles to work in a steady flow of traffic. The only stops I have to make are traffic lights/stop signs.

Well, looks like I've got to find a way to rent/borrow a car with a manual for a day or two. Thanks for the responses, regardless of whether you answered the question 100% properly. (No offense intended for those who didn't.)
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Old 04-12-2009, 08:47 PM   #13
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Well, looks like I've got to find a way to rent/borrow a car with a manual for a day or two.
Sounds like a great idea, as long as you remember that it takes months to get comfortable with it and try to imagine what it's going to be like after you're good at it.
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she really underestimates the damage i would do to her reproductive organs
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Old 04-12-2009, 08:58 PM   #14
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Sounds like a great idea, as long as you remember that it takes months to get comfortable with it and try to imagine what it's going to be like after you're good at it.
Right, right. I guess I just need to make sure that a manual's going to feel right to me in the long run. I've got a buddy who told me I could practice on his old Mazda 626. Maybe I'll have to take him up on the offer sooner than later.

Quote:
Originally Posted by UsedTaHaveA68 View Post
Better yet, try and talk your dad into letting you drive his Porsche (SWEET!). Drive it around for a couple hours and see what you think.
Forgot to mention this... His '87 911 is actually what I learned on. Significantly harder than when I drove my brother's '03 G35 coupe. The lessons continued when my dad sold his '87 911 and bought a '97 911 Turbo with a computer tweak to push out 500 hp.

I don't recall ever driving the black convertible he got after getting rid of the Turbo, but I have driven his latest 911. I'm not sure of the year, but it's a 997 Carrera 4, similar to CGM (minus the blue flecks) in color. That was pretty easy to drive, except for my dad sitting in the passenger seat and saying "give it more gas" and "go ahead and go faster", even though I was already going 5 over the speed limit.
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Old 04-12-2009, 10:05 PM   #15
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That's only on the V6 model.
Did something change that I am not aware of???
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Old 04-13-2009, 01:05 AM   #16
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No I do believe that the L99 does have VVT.
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Old 04-13-2009, 01:24 AM   #17
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I don't know, I drive in heavy traffic all the time and ever since I started driving it's been a standard. Yeah, the first couple times it may hurt your leg but I guarantee after a week of it you won't even notice anymore.

Personally, I love driving a manual car and you couldn't pay me to take an automatic, but it's all personal preference.

Also, I've really never heard of someone getting tired of shifting; honestly it becomes second nature and you don't even realize you're shifting anymore.
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