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Discussion Starter #1
I am going to test drive a 392 today. I always expected to get a manual, but there are no manuals anywhere nearby so I won't be able to test drive a manual to compare. I will have to order, wait for a dealer swap on my behalf for an unseen car, or go looooong distance to do business with a dealer I will never see again. None of these options thrill me. I am not a track or drag guy, just want the car to be as fun as possible on the street and as a daily driver. I do love a manual transmission though, but I have read posts where people seem to like the auto with manual shift option.

I know there is a ton of threads about auto vs manual, and a lot of threads that just turn into auto vs manual debate...my question is, anybody ever change their mind about thier preference? Any manual drivers out there who wound up loving their auto, or auto owners who decided to go manual? I know I should probably just bite the bullet and wait for a manual, but after months of looking, research, and dreaming of a Challenger, I guess I just want to hope that I might be able to make a deal today and take it home tonight. It would sure make tomorrow the best Monday commute ever.
 

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i had originally ordered a manual, but changed my mind and got an Automatic..i was always 55-45 for the manual...i couldnt find a White IE within 100 mines(with a good price) with a manual....so i changed to a Automatic

Manual Pro's: $1,300 cheaper, more fun to drive(if you like manual), same trans as the Viper, modern/competitive with 5.0/SS

Manual Neg's: wheel hop, more difficult to launch, slower 1/4 mile times

For me the main reason i originally chose the 6 speed was because it was in the viper and i felt the 5 speed automatic was dated(everyone else has 6 speed auto's).....i switched because now my wife can drive the car(rarely), i have a bad knee that causes issues w/ the clutch, i am not an expert drag racer and it gives the novice the advantage.....while the Shelby 6 speed stick is trying to get traction and launch his car i hope to just push the pedal and GO!

even though i bought the Automatic I still feel 50/50 that i should have gotten the 6 speed....i got the mopar T handle shifter...it makes me feel a bit more manly and helps the automatic look...i hate the minivan automatic shifter they give the Challenger

if Dodge had a 6 speed automatic or the new 8 speed Automatic id be 100% for the automatic.....its that outdated 5 speed thing that bugs me...for $50k its hard to accept outdated anything!!!
 

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The term "outdated" is entirely arbitrary and perception-oriented when it comes to transmissions. The real issue is not how "old" the unit is, rather how well does it do the intended job. That said, there is *nothing* outdated about the 5-spd, as far as doing the job it was intended. If 5-spds is sufficient to do the job today, it will still do the same job just as well 20 years from now.

You should also be aware that the "6 speed" manual would be subject to the same definition of "outdated" by virtue of having the same number of reduction gears as the 5-spd and the same moderate overdrive gear. The chief difference that makes it a "6 speed" is the extra overdrive gear in addition to the regular one. You're not really getting an extra gear to row in some triple-digit run, unless you happen to be on some isolated salt flat, electronic governor disabled, shooting for 170 mph, or so. ;)

Now it's a bit silly to draw the line between modern and outdated over simply having 1 extra overdrive gear, isn't it?
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Sounds a lot like where I am on this. The 50/50 wondering is my exact concern. Do you find yourself using the manual shift option much, or do you just tend to leave it in "drive"?
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Randycatt99, would I be right in assume that extra "6th" overdrive gear gives you some cruising calm and fuel economy on long highway jaunts?
 

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This question is only rivaled by "which exhaust should I get?" on this forum...LOL
I will tell you this story from my own personal experience.
I originally wanted a Challenger with a manual transmission. When I initially ordered the car, the salesmanager told me the factory had a hold on them (manual transmissions) so there would be a little longer wait for the car. A couple of weeks later I started thinking (big mistake) and after finding one on another dealership lot, decided to get a different Challenger, only this one had an auto transmission. Dealer trade was made and I got my car with minimal wait.:) I really liked the car overall and the auto transmission shifted really well but in my mind, something was missing. Even when using it in auto stick mode, it just wasn't the same as using a manual transmission. To me, there just seems to be more of a connection with the car regarding the overall driving experience when using a manual transmission compared with the auto. I was missing this connection with the auto. This is pretty much why I switched out the following year to the manual tranny(the Det. Yellow color helped also:browsmiley:). Needless to say, I took a "hit" trading a car in after only 1 year.:notallthere:
Now with all of that said I do have a couple of exceptions to add. IF I was racing this car, or driving it as a daily driver in stop and go traffic everyday, both of which I'm not, I would still have the car with auto tranny.
You are likely to get a 50/50 response both for and against the auto and manual transmission....each dependant on what the driver prefers for their own reasons. Neither side is right or wrong, just choices based on personal preference.
The question you need to answer for yourself is: If 2 of the exact same cars were available immediately, each equipped with different transmissions, which would you choose?
Sorry to be so long winded, but maybe this can give you some more insight toward your decision. Afterall, this is a pretty substantial purchase you are about to make and you should get it exactly as you want with no regrets.:thumbsup:
 

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:deadhorse:Oh lord not again!
It's really all your preference, whichever makes you feel bette when you drive it. I love my 6 speed and bumper to bumper traffic don't bothere at all. Drive both see which feels better to you and decide
 

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I think most people who are confused on which to do will be more happy with the 6 speed, UNLESS you plan to spend serious time doing the 1/4.
 

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As others stated, only you can really choose what you want. I like automatics, but I've found that guys who like manuals, like to shift, will never be truly happy with an automatic.

So, if you really like a manual in a car, don't settle for an automatic, you won't be happy.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Thanks guys, lots to weigh out here, all of it good. I wish I could drive both but that's not possible in my area so im going to have to use my best guess aided by your insights. Thanks for sharing your thoughts and experiences. Im heading out to the dealer soon. It's nice and rainy here so it should be real quiet at the dealer...plenty of time try the car and think. I'll update whatever happens. Thanks again.
 

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I have to ask why anyone would spend this kind of money (392) and not get EXACTLY what they want? That applies to leather vs. cloth, nav/no nav, 6M or Auto, etc.
 

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I have to ask why anyone would spend this kind of money (392) and not get EXACTLY what they want? That applies to leather vs. cloth, nav/no nav, 6M or Auto, etc.
I hear you. I think some times we just don't know what we want. I know I would LOVE to have a manual, at first. But, I think I'd tire of it eventually. That's the kind of things some people, myself included, will go through in their heads when making that size of a purchases.
But you are right, once you know, go after what you really want. I drove an hour away from home to buy my car because no one around me had what I wanted. I got lucky that it was only an hour.
 

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Everyone is always on the, "The auto's faster on the track", and now in most cases, they are.

Really, how many spend 70% of their time at the track? As for compareing it to the 5.0 and the SS. Sure they're there, but is that all you plan to do with your car? Hunt Stangs and Camaro's?

As one poster mentioned above, the 6 speed does really let you connect with the car. Engages you. Nothing like rowing through the gears, or holding it where you want in and out of corners.

Somethings are just right with the 6 speed in this car. If that's what you originally wanted, you should stick with it. I think you be disappointed if you don't. The clutch is acctually lighter than many think.

As for a few .10's in the 1/4? Either R/T or SRT is faster than 95% of the cars on the road anyway.Who cares. The car is a great toy. You should have fun with it and enjoy it. Part of that play is the shifting.

I do understand the reasons for an auto in most cases, knee's, wife...etc.
Just my opinion.
 

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Randycatt99, would I be right in assume that extra "6th" overdrive gear gives you some cruising calm and fuel economy on long highway jaunts?
It just gives you a step more cruising calm and fuel economy. It's not like those things are missing with just the "regular" overdrive gear. Even moreso, you still need a pretty open hwy with a liberal speed limit to even put it to use, or you'll just be lugging the engine in 6th.

This all goes back to my earlier point that the difference between 5 and 6 speeds is hardly about being "outdated". If you have all the speeds to fit your needs, just adding more to seem "up to date" will simply get in your way. If that is what being "outdated" means, then I'll happily pick outdated over blindly slaving to marketing trends. ;)
 

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The clutch is very light in this car and that was what I found disappointing. I test drove both and absolutely hated the feel of the clutch. I also wasn't real fond of the high center consel and stubby little shifter. So I ordered an auto(cant do anything about the console but w/an auto its less of an annoyance).
Like most have said drive both even if you have to wait until a manual is available and then purchase the one you like best. Because ultimately it you are the one that is going to be driving the car.
 

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Do you like chocolate ice cream or vanilla? All about preference. Not sure? Try both and see which you like best.

Personally I love to have complete control of the power of the engine. There is a very visceral feeling being able to shift gears on a big V8 with lots of torque. :smoker:

Auto is a nice choice for daily driving, and if you want to heavily mod your car. 6 speed will have a lower threshold for something breaking, as opposed to a built up auto.
 

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Manual all the way for me. I love feeling I have some control over how I drive my car. There are too many controls out of my control and the 6 speed gives some of that control back to me. 6 speeds are cooler IMO. Be a man, buy the 6 speed, lol.
 
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