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First, I have had several manual transmission cars before. 84 Toyota Corolla. Kept it 14 years and 150,000 miles. 85 Mazda Pickup (Wife's car) Small 86 ford wagon (wife's car - piece of @#$%) But, have had nothing but automatics since about 96.

Anyway, the new element will be my wife's car and then my son's. Had assumed we would buy an automatic for resale purposes and simply the fact that automatic transmissions are so good these days, ie, you no longer get a huge performance advantage.

Then, it occured to me that my wife just tears up automatic transmissions. She destroyed the automatic in her 93 MPV at less than 70,000 miles and already screwed up the automatic on the Expedition that we are leasing. (The lease is up August 26. And, I will buy an Element EX.) She never tore up any of the Sticks that she has had. (Don't ask me how she distroys automatic transmissions.)

So finally to my question.

Is there any reason I should not buy a stick? For most people the answer is they are horribly inconvenient. If you have never driven one you are taking a big risk.

And, and really good reasons for getting the stick besides the inital cost savings?

Will say that I am horribly dissappointed in the color selections. Would prefer to get the orange but hate the black interior, so I will probably get the dreaded silver simply because the interior is not as offensive.

Regards,

Doug Fejer
 

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Hi Doug. How on earth can one rip through an auto transmission :? Anyhoo in the many test drives I've taken the E for (okay, one sold me, but I just wanted to keep trying it out) the 5spd is definitely the way to go. I'm biased though, I've never understood the appeal of an automatic. Stop and go traffic - never has bothered me with a standard. I have found Honda automatics to be much more sluggish than their standard counterparts. Really noticeable on the E. The automatic version felt heavy - while the 5spd provided great pep and excellent zoom (sorry for these technical terms :) You probably will be able to get an automatic right away though - the 5spd are not as popular. As for resale - don't worry about it. It would be a negligible diference - and besides - you're never gonna want to sell the E! Cheers
 

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For many years I preferred manual transmissions, but have arrived at an age where I prefer the convenience of an auto. Especially here in the Metroplex. Actually, I don't think you can go wrong with either.
 

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I take exception to that. I for one like the silver better than the other colors. "Dreaded" is a little harsh when describing something contrary to your preference, unless of course you're speaking of the dreaded Expedition.
 

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Doug, it sounds like you already know the answer, but to humor you: I can relate, my wife was hard on a lot of things, though I love her as I'm sure you do yours. (Jen passed away 2 years ago, that's why I say "was.") I think you're in good shape buying a stick. Your wife is easy on them, and hasn't had one in seven years, so it will probably be a fun change for her. Unless she is bumper to bumper every day for miles. Plus it will be good for your son to drive a manual tran -- it could save a friend's life (or someone else's) someday in case he has to drive someone home who's had too much to drink -- in their stick. The stick is also a lot of fun, period, imho. Sorry you don't like the colors; I think they are pretty cool, but I will admit the orange could use a little dress-up on the inside (though it's not all-black int) -- see my other recent post for ideas in case you really like the orange. You can also expect the 5spd to be a little tougher to find -- but not impossible. I took delivery of mine 2 days ago. :wink: Good luck!
Steve
 

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If there had been awd 5-speeds on the lot when I bought my E, it would have been a tough decision on auto vs. stick. Being that there weren't any...

I'm enjoying the auto. My 2 previous cars were sticks ('99 Si and 2k2 Si) and I enjoyed floggin' them through the gears. But, they were designed around the high revvin' engine. The E is not. Part of my plan in getting out of the Si was to ease it back a notch or two - slow my "gotta be first in any pack" attitude down a bit. An automatic fills that bill better than a manual.

I've found that as my E gets more broken in (just crossed 4k miles), the engine performance is increasing. The 2k2 Si was this way also, it never started feeling like it was on par with the '99 Si until it crossed 5k miles. So, the E isn't exactly sluggish anymore, and will respond to being driven hard.

My only serious miff with the a/t is that when I have been slowed down to say 3-5 mph and then start to accelerate, it flat out will not start back in 1st. 2nd is the gear of choice, and it doesn't kick in well at that low speed. I've gotten used to yanking her down into L1 in these situations.
 

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JoeyinPHX said:
Forget about the resale. This ride is a keeper. With a manual the pick up and pull are awesome!
Thanks, I've been wondering...I've nearly always had a manual and planned to buy my Element with one...but wondered.
Only twice in my life have I pulled off the road with my left foot sore from shifting (horrid traffice). I think I'll last a bit longer before I go automatic.
 

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My manual transmission ROCKS!
I spent the extra time and effort to get a 5-spd, well worth it. Never considered the automatic, although Honda builds a good one. I like to DRIVE when I drive and a 5-spd lets me do that.
The fact that it is more responsive - peppier, some say - is just s bonus. Lazy Left Foot Syndrome hasn't struck here yet! :razz:
 

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While I would prefer a manual transmission in an ideal world, the traffic in L.A. is as bad (and getting worse) as you think. My commute takes an average of an hour in heavy traffic. This makes getting a manual a strictly no-go for me.

The manual transmission Element actually gets a little wose mileage in the city if I remember correctly. Plus the Element really isn't sporty (in the sports car sense at least, unlike my last manual transmission car, a BMW 325is), so an automatic transmission was pretty much a given. But again, IF I lived where traffic wasn't a nightmare, I would go for the manual. Nothing like the sense of control you have with a manual.

Now if Honda could install VW's DSG transmission in the Element....
 
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