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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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All opinions matter, but it is a roadster/sports car - dictates manual, no?
 

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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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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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Long Live the Manual...

It is a REALLY GOOD manual. If you are ever going to drive a manual...you 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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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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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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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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Good rule of thumb: buy an auto if you endure stop & go city traffic, a manual if you don't.
 

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My wife had a hard time learning a manual, but when her car's brake lines blew and my 2012 Cruze Eco 6-speed manual was the only car available to drive, she learned out of necessity. She's grown to enjoy it, and feels awkward driving automatic cars. She had an absolute blast test driving the 124 Spider, so we got ours in a manual.

It's a shame not to get this car in a manual, not only because of the driving experience it offers that an automatic won't, but because the manual is just SO GOOD. The shifts are mechanical, firm, and deliberate. The gates are easily identified and tight, and the throw is short. It is a deeply satisfying experience to row those gears, and one you won't have with an automatic.
 

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My wife won't/can't drive a manual and once we had an emergency where I had a bad medication reaction and we had my manual Solstice. Won't put her in that situation again. The auto in the Fiat is terrific and it has a manual mode if you really want to shift. The longer i own it the less I miss a manual. You lose nothing in the driving experience so if you want one....get it.
 

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I'm very happy with my auto, to each their own.
 

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I have had lots of high performance cars with manuals in them...this time I went with the automatic and do not regret my decision at all...the automatic actually performs great in stock form...and with some tweaking would be even better...if I get where I want to do some manual controlling I just move it over to the manual position and shift it...and I never miss a shift...other times when cruising with the wife i just leave it in auto and set back and enjoy the ride....the best of both worlds without the third pedal...actually both transmissions perform very well and make quite an enjoyable ride...it's just a matter of preference...Enjoy You Spider Today!!;)
 

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If you have two working legs...manual. It's not like cog swapping is a chore in the 124.
 

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My wife had a hard time learning a manual, but when her car's brake lines blew and my 2012 Cruze Eco 6-speed manual was the only car available to drive, she learned out of necessity. She's grown to enjoy it, and feels awkward driving automatic cars. She had an absolute blast test driving the 124 Spider, so we got ours in a manual.

It's a shame not to get this car in a manual, not only because of the driving experience it offers that an automatic won't, but because the manual is just SO GOOD. The shifts are mechanical, firm, and deliberate. The gates are easily identified and tight, and the throw is short. It is a deeply satisfying experience to row those gears, and one you won't have with an automatic.
Similar experience here. When I met my wife over a dozen years back she was driving an Audi A4 with CVT trans. It was a very nice car. She really had no interest in the stick shifting, or a roadster. But she got interested in the fun she watched me and our team having with racing the Miatas, started putting her time in with the stick, started racing and winning (pic below), and now over a decade later she daily drives a Miata with the stick and loves working the gears.

 

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Just to add; I DO endure stop and go traffic in Sothern California EVERY day to, usually from, work. Got a Manual Abarth and yes, my foot feels like it can use a break every now and then but the clutch and shifts are so precise and the transmission really feels so good that even in stop and go I really don't seem to mind. And when I do get the opportunities to use it to its full potential....It is SO worth it!


Just my 2 cents.
 

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There are days I'm glad I'm old. This is a question that has no right/wrong answer unlike what all the young bucks think. Now I didn't get here easily. At 68 I've owned many,(too many the wife says) cars in my day. All except a couple of Range Rovers and my motorhome were manuals. In fact back in the day I was on the manual side of discussions on the Audi TT sub board of AudiWorld when Audi announced they were adding an autobox to the mix in the early 2000's. What the H3ll was Audi thinking.. an autobox in a TT! Boy was that fun... Today I've mellowed or maybe it's just my old knees. Still have the TT roadster and love it (plan on being buried in it!) However, my DD is an Abarth C in auto. Will be going auto in the 124 later this year as well. Just go with whatever feels best to you.... The best advise I'm seen in this thread is to try both for more than a short drive before putting any $$$ down. Good luck with whatever you decide and enjoy the ride.

Opps, forgot my Jenson Interceptor was auto too.
 

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I got the 6 speed. Every time I get a car with an auto I regret it within a year. Like ILVH8RS I drive in stop and go commuter traffic almost everyday. Didn't mind it with my 6 speed Saab convertible and I imagine I won't mind it with the 124. Although I have to say it is nice when I drive the Acadia to work and have a break from shifting in traffic.
 

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I started hating manuals when I put in a racing clutch and flywheel in my 2010 MX5 ...never did get really comfortable with the engagement. In the Abarth with paddle shifters, I like the idea that I can still paddle shift while in "D" mode. I got a set of larger paddles from Amazon (built to fit the MX5), and really like them.
 
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