Auto or manual? - Fiat 124 Spider Forum
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post #1 of 65 (permalink) Old 03-16-2017, 07:27 PM Thread Starter
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Auto or manual?

Looking to buy the Lusso with the Premium Package. This is our second car, run around with errands, and perhaps some road trips. Traffic is light in our area. STUPID QUESTION: Manual (hard to find) or Automatic???
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post #2 of 65 (permalink) Old 03-16-2017, 07:36 PM
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All opinions matter, but it is a roadster/sports car - dictates manual, no?
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post #3 of 65 (permalink) Old 03-16-2017, 07:37 PM
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There are valid reasons for either. Go with what works for you.

The wait time for a manual shouldn't figure into your thinking. You're going to own and enjoy the car for a long time, so the wait will be insignificant compared to that - unless you need wheels right now, in which case availability takes precedence.

I, too, wanted a Lusso with the premium package and a manual transmission. It took scouring national inventories daily for a couple months, then jumping on one when it appeared - at a dealer 800 miles away. I had it shipped and have been loving it.

If it's going to be a fun car, then make it fun - whichever transmission that means.
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post #4 of 65 (permalink) Old 03-16-2017, 09:02 PM
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Auto has always been one of the deal breakers with my wife. She can't drive a stick no matter how many times she's tried. The rule has pretty much been do whatever I want with whatever car I want as long as she can drive it in the end if necessary.

Despite the higher price tag I was able to negotiate a better deal on an auto bc it had been sitting on the lot. The only pain point I've had is the lag shifting between gears is certainly one of the worst I've seen, but not the worst. The mods have helped with that a lot for sure.

You really need to drive both. Make sure you will be satisfied and remain interested despite the choice you make. I had a buddy that bought a Challenger R/T automatic and figured he could live with the auto stick functionality and eventually sold it and had to suck up the negative equity bc he hated it so much in the end. He's said multiple times he wishes he had driven it a 2nd time and longer before he purchased.

And also, don't let others opinions necessarily weigh on your mind. People razz me a lot for having an automatic. That just seems to be the cool thing to do for whatever reason. Lucky for them I bought the car to satisfy me and not them.
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post #5 of 65 (permalink) Old 03-16-2017, 09:05 PM
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Long Live the Manual...

It is a REALLY GOOD manual. If you are ever going to drive a want this one.

Unless you deal with bad stop and go traffic or have a trick knee, then my suggestion is the manual is part of the joy and part of a DEEPER involvement with the mechanical experience of this car which makes it nearly unique in a sea of boring cars. The auto in this car is actually very good, paddle shifting feature is decent, but the manual gets you closer to the action.
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post #6 of 65 (permalink) Old 03-16-2017, 09:13 PM
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Do you really want a bunch of complete strangers on an internet forum to answer whether YOU should get a manual or an auto? If I had asked that question and listened to what the likely consensus of this forum would suggest, I'd have ended up with a manual. And now I'd be pissed because I wanted the auto. So, you're right - it is a stupid question.
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post #7 of 65 (permalink) Old 03-16-2017, 09:23 PM
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I grew up with manuals, including a 850 Spider and my wife, although from Tennessee, spent her early adult life in Italy with a Cinquecento (500), and a Fiat 126 named Mangelino. Point being we are comfortable with manual.
You got to do what works for your family unit. However i find the manual has the added advantage, besides the fun factor, of being harder to steal. Fewer and fewer thugs can drive a stick....think about it if you are in a urban environment.
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post #8 of 65 (permalink) Old 03-16-2017, 10:21 PM
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The 124's automatic is a really nice transmission. For "running errands" the auto would be my choice, and was my choice. For those occasions when I want to downshift to a lower gear in anticipation of a pass on the highway, there is the manual mode. Whatever you do try them both before deciding.
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post #9 of 65 (permalink) Old 03-16-2017, 10:29 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks John, good advice.
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post #10 of 65 (permalink) Old 03-16-2017, 11:13 PM
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Good rule of thumb: buy an auto if you endure stop & go city traffic, a manual if you don't.

2017 124 Abarth. Previous: 2010 Corvette Grand Sport, 2004 Nissan 350Z Touring convertible, 1996 BMW 328IC convertible , 1995 Camaro V-6 coupe. Current garage mate for trips to Costco: 2009 Genesis sedan V-8.
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