Automatic Vs Standard Trans?

Topic 6770 | Page 1

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Rich K.'s Comment
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Recently spoke to a recruiter with a major carrier and he said ALL their trucks are auto. I was wondering your opinions of driving an auto trans. Things like MPG, downshifting for downhills, power on accel etc etc.

Heavy C's Comment
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Oh the good ole automatic trans question. There's plenty of varying opinions on this subject. First mpg. In my companies experience with the one we have it's gets about three mpg better then the 10 speeds we run. So there is a significant increase. Others however say that they get the same mpg with their manuals so again varying opinion. Control on down hills. You hear a lot of "veteran" drivers complain about this. The fact is though you get as much control with the autos as the manuals. You can still shift it when you need to and choose what gear you want to get started in. Truth is there is really no difference. The complaints usually come from guys who can't/won't except change. Acceleration. This part is the unfortunate side effect of these new autos. They get up to speed like a slug climbing a vertical ice wall. When you go to merge into traffic you better make sure you have plenty of room because it is God awful slow. Pulling power is still there from my experience though, at least with the lighter trailers my company pulls.

All in all I like the new autos. They are a life saver in heavy stop and go traffic. And once you learn to drive it properly you probably won't notice much of a difference between them and the manuals.

Except that maybe you'll get called a "steering wheel holder" from the super truckers haha.


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PanamaExpat's Comment
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You will like the auto while sitting in Atlanta traffic at 5:15PM. Modern computer controlled autos are actually superior to manuals in terms of shifting and you have no chance of it coming out of gear when going down hill and ending up with a runaway on your hands. I grew up driving manuals... If I have to spend all day driving the auto is just one less thing I need to deal with. You should learn on manual though that way if you are ever faced with one you can handle it. Yes... I know how to speed shift or FLOAT gears as you now call it.

Float Gears:

An expression used to describe someone who is shifting gears without using the clutch at all. Drivers are taught to "Double Clutch" or press and release the clutch twice for each gear shift. If you're floating gears it means you're simply shifting without using the clutch at all.

Scott O.'s Comment
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Someone on here said they didn't like the autos when backing up to a trailer that the truck would jump a foot or less and make backing hard... I don't remember who said it or the details but I like manuals

Pat M.'s Comment
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Someone on here said they didn't like the autos when backing up to a trailer that the truck would jump a foot or less and make backing hard... I don't remember who said it or the details but I like manuals

they are basing that on the original automatic the newer ones don't seem to have the issue

Rich K.'s Comment
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Thanks guys. A lot of great info. Hey Pat M I really like your avatar.

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Equipment Questions Tips For Shifting
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