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Rental Cars In Europe  
User currently offlineDC10extender From United States of America, joined Nov 2006, 617 posts, RR: 0
Posted (7 years 7 months 1 week 21 hours ago) and read 2017 times:

Any chance that one could find an automatic instead of a manual? If so, where and from whom?


Did you ever read on your birth certificate that life is fair? Thats cause its not there.
43 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offlinePelican From Germany, joined Apr 2004, 2531 posts, RR: 7
Reply 1, posted (7 years 7 months 1 week 21 hours ago) and read 2011 times:

Quoting DC10extender (Thread starter):
Any chance that one could find an automatic instead of a manual? If so, where and from whom?

In which country do you want to rent a car? Here in Germany from mid-size (3series, C-class, A4) upwards you'll get most likely an automatic from all the big rental companies. Bigger than mid-size and you'll can't get a manual anymore.

pelican


User currently offlineDC10extender From United States of America, joined Nov 2006, 617 posts, RR: 0
Reply 2, posted (7 years 7 months 1 week 21 hours ago) and read 2008 times:

Germany, Austria, Ireland, England, France, the Netherlands.


Did you ever read on your birth certificate that life is fair? Thats cause its not there.
User currently offlineHalls120 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 3, posted (7 years 7 months 1 week 21 hours ago) and read 2002 times:

Quoting DC10extender (Reply 2):
Germany, Austria, Ireland, England, France, the Netherlands.

You can get automatics in all of the above countries. Although in Ireland two years ago, there were slim pickings at Shannon Airport.


User currently offlineDC10extender From United States of America, joined Nov 2006, 617 posts, RR: 0
Reply 4, posted (7 years 7 months 1 week 21 hours ago) and read 2002 times:

What about vans, something that would carry 5 people and luggage? Or is it mainly cars?


Did you ever read on your birth certificate that life is fair? Thats cause its not there.
User currently offlineTheSonntag From Germany, joined Jun 2005, 3585 posts, RR: 29
Reply 5, posted (7 years 7 months 1 week 21 hours ago) and read 1998 times:

It should not be a problem to get an automatic transmission car. I would suggest you to rent a nice big Diesel car, like Mercedes C-Class, E-Class, BMW 3 or 6 series, or Aud A4 or A6.

They all have great automatic transmission gears available (even though nothing beats manual if you ask me), and they are very good for accelerating from 80mph to 120mph in a short time. Vmax would be around 220km/h (around 135 mph), enough for most uses.


User currently offlinePelican From Germany, joined Apr 2004, 2531 posts, RR: 7
Reply 6, posted (7 years 7 months 1 week 21 hours ago) and read 1996 times:

Quoting DC10extender (Reply 2):
Germany, Austria, Ireland, England, France, the Netherlands.

I see. Well I can only speak for Germany and as I said before if you rent a mid-size car you'll get an automatic in most cases and if you book something bigger you can't get anything else than automatic. I'll find this annoying because I prefer manual. I made the experience with Sixt and Europcar (two big car rental companies in Germany) that they have a hard time to find a manual for me - at least when I wanted a mid-size car. Sixt and also Europcar told me that they have only very few manual cars nowadays. So automatic will be the standard and manual an exception if you don't rent a small car.

pelican


User currently offlineTheSonntag From Germany, joined Jun 2005, 3585 posts, RR: 29
Reply 7, posted (7 years 7 months 1 week 21 hours ago) and read 1996 times:

Quoting DC10extender (Reply 4):
What about vans, something that would carry 5 people and luggage? Or is it mainly cars?

Good cars would be the VW Sharan or Ford Galaxy. They are available with automatic transmission, but getting so at a rental company is probably rather difficult.

Another alternative could be VW Touran or Opel Zafira, great cars, but automatic transmission is seen seldom here. Therefore I doubt you can get them from a rental company.


User currently offlineAsstChiefMark From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 8, posted (7 years 7 months 1 week 21 hours ago) and read 1988 times:

Most of the time, an automatic will make the rental price jump up by 2 to 4 classes.

Last time I checked, a tiny Vauxhall Astra Automatic cost more to rent than a Ford Mondeo 2.0 Manual.

Mark


User currently offlinePelican From Germany, joined Apr 2004, 2531 posts, RR: 7
Reply 9, posted (7 years 7 months 1 week 21 hours ago) and read 1986 times:

Quoting DC10extender (Reply 4):
What about vans, something that would carry 5 people and luggage? Or is it mainly cars?

Sixt has a SUV rental categorie (Volvo XC90, Jeep Grand Cherokee, SsangYong Rexton). They should be automatic as standard.

pelican


User currently offlinePelican From Germany, joined Apr 2004, 2531 posts, RR: 7
Reply 10, posted (7 years 7 months 1 week 21 hours ago) and read 1984 times:

Quoting AsstChiefMark (Reply 8):
Most of the time, an automatic will make the rental price jump up by 2 to 4 classes.

That would be new in Germany - at least for the rental car companies I've experience with.

pelican


User currently offlineTheSonntag From Germany, joined Jun 2005, 3585 posts, RR: 29
Reply 11, posted (7 years 7 months 1 week 21 hours ago) and read 1974 times:

Just a short question: You are aware that you must drive on the "wrong side" when you are in Ireland and the UK, I guess... The rest of Europe drives on the right. So in the UK and Ireland you will have the steering on the right side, while the rest of Europe is like the US.

BTW, Vauxhall and Opel are identical today, Vauxhall cars are the ones for the UK market with the steering on the right side.

Depending on where you travel, you should also consider trains, especially if you intend to travel domestically in Germany or France. However, a rental car should usually be cheaper.


User currently offlineAsstChiefMark From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 12, posted (7 years 7 months 1 week 21 hours ago) and read 1970 times:

Quoting Pelican (Reply 10):
That would be new in Germany

The price of a rental in the UK is guaranteed to increase by 10% to 50% if it has an automatic. That only applies to "working mans'" cars.

Mark


User currently offlineAsstChiefMark From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 13, posted (7 years 7 months 1 week 21 hours ago) and read 1965 times:

Quoting TheSonntag (Reply 11):
So in the UK and Ireland you will have the steering on the right side

I find driving a RHD car with a 5-speed quite easy. It's second nature to me. I think a lot of Americans, including those who are used to driving manuals, are a little freaked out by the thought of the RHD/left side of the road thing. So they splurge and rent cars with automatics to "be on the safe side."

I remember seeing a car hire near Gatwick that kept a supply of American Ford Escorts with automatics for their high-strung American customers. They cost three times as much as their British counterparts. That was over 20 years ago.

Mark


User currently offlinePelican From Germany, joined Apr 2004, 2531 posts, RR: 7
Reply 14, posted (7 years 7 months 1 week 21 hours ago) and read 1965 times:

Quoting AsstChiefMark (Reply 12):
The price of a rental in the UK is guaranteed to increase by 10% to 50% if it has an automatic. That only applies to "working mans'" cars.

I see. The policy regarding manual and automatic seems to be different in Germany or for the companies I know.

pelican


User currently offlineDC10extender From United States of America, joined Nov 2006, 617 posts, RR: 0
Reply 15, posted (7 years 7 months 1 week 20 hours ago) and read 1954 times:

Thanks for the help.


Did you ever read on your birth certificate that life is fair? Thats cause its not there.
User currently offlineDuff44 From United States of America, joined Apr 2006, 1723 posts, RR: 0
Reply 16, posted (7 years 7 months 1 week 19 hours ago) and read 1938 times:

On a tangent:

My sister is a resident of the UK, and if I visit her I'll need a car. I drive a manual now in the US.

Is it really difficult to make the switch to shifting left-handed?
Also, is the pattern different? On my 5-spd, 1st gear is up/left, 5th is up/right, reverse is down/right

Just curious...



I'll rassle ya for a bowl of bacon!
User currently offlineJAGflyer From Canada, joined Aug 2004, 3526 posts, RR: 4
Reply 17, posted (7 years 7 months 1 week 19 hours ago) and read 1932 times:

German cars have the pattern R 1 3 5
___________________________2 4

You push the knob down and the stick up left to go into R

[Edited 2007-02-12 04:18:49]


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User currently offlineFly747 From Canada, joined Apr 2005, 1497 posts, RR: 9
Reply 18, posted (7 years 7 months 1 week 19 hours ago) and read 1932 times:

Quoting Duff44 (Reply 16):
Also, is the pattern different? On my 5-spd, 1st gear is up/left, 5th is up/right, reverse is down/right

Pattern is still the same.

Ivan



Contrails Aviation Photography
User currently offlinePelican From Germany, joined Apr 2004, 2531 posts, RR: 7
Reply 19, posted (7 years 7 months 1 week 11 hours ago) and read 1890 times:

Quoting JAGflyer (Reply 17):

You push the knob down and the stick up left to go into R

Where you'll find the reverse gear depends on the manufacturer.

pelican


User currently offlineAndz From South Africa, joined Feb 2004, 8453 posts, RR: 10
Reply 20, posted (7 years 7 months 1 week 10 hours ago) and read 1872 times:
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Quoting JAGflyer (Reply 17):

German cars have the pattern R 1 3 5
___________________________2 4

If you have an old cheap one  Smile

My German car has the pattern R 1 3 5
____________________________2 4 6



After Monday and Tuesday even the calendar says WTF...
User currently offlineZakHH From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 21, posted (7 years 7 months 1 week 10 hours ago) and read 1864 times:

Quoting Duff44 (Reply 16):
Is it really difficult to make the switch to shifting left-handed?

A mere year ago, I drove RHD for the 1st time. Shifting with the left hand is piece of cake. You'll get used to it after seconds, really.

What is tricky about RHD is where to look. I mean, usually, when you are an experienced driver, you would not think where to look first e.g. when turning left. You do it instinctively. But with RHD, you will need to pay more attention on when to look where.

Apart from that, I found it easier than I first assumed. Also no problems to switch back to LHD after returning home.

On a lighter note, after I returned from the USA in '95, I had some more problems adapting back to our traffic. I've been driving several thousand miles during our 5-week trip in the US. Right after returning back to Germany, I wanted to quickly drive to the supermarket, to fill my empty fridge. I had to turn right at a traffic light that was red, but still being in "US mode", I stopped and then proceeded to turn right after seeing that the road was clear.

Had the cops right behind me - they couldn't believe their eyes. Turning right at a red traffic light was strictly forbidden at that time in Germany(it's nowadays allowed at some crossings). They immediately pulled me over and were quite pissed in the beginning. Luckily, as I had just returned minutes ago, I still had my flight ticket with me and could prove that I just returned from the USA.

After hearing my story (and seeing the ticket) they relaxed and let me go with only a warning.


User currently offlineKaiGywer From United States of America, joined Oct 2003, 12250 posts, RR: 35
Reply 22, posted (7 years 7 months 1 week 7 hours ago) and read 1839 times:
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I guess by having automatic transmissions in rentals they reduce the risk of people breaking the clutch from abuse.

Also, makes it easier for Americans to rent a car  Wink



911, where is your emergency?
User currently offlineAsstChiefMark From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 23, posted (7 years 7 months 1 week 6 hours ago) and read 1823 times:

Quoting ZakHH (Reply 21):
What is tricky about RHD is where to look

Getting used to the clockwise roundabouts in the UK took some getting used to. I heard lots of horns and tire squeals around me at first. Now they're a piece of trifle.  Big grin

I sort of enjoy driving with first-time American visitors as passengers. I've never seen knuckles turn so white!

Mark


User currently offlineBigOrange From United States of America, joined Apr 2004, 2365 posts, RR: 3
Reply 24, posted (7 years 7 months 6 days 18 hours ago) and read 1771 times:

Quoting Duff44 (Reply 16):
Is it really difficult to make the switch to shifting left-handed?

It can be! I drove for 10 years in the UK, then moved here and the switch to right handed shift was no problem. Going back on vacation 2 years ago I couldn't drive for s**t. It's not so much the shift that's the problem, it's remembering which side of the road to drive on!


25 Post contains images Banco : The well known danger spot for us residents is keeping an eye out for Americans joining the M25 for the first time after picking up the car from LHR.
26 Post contains images Cornish : I believe that's when they suffer from the affliction known as Colnbrook Skidmarks Actually with the new junction for T5 so close to the M25/M4 inter
27 ThePRGuy : Audi? Thanks Alex
28 Cornish : I believe Andz has a BMW - but my Audi has the same pattern.....
29 N1120A : Actually, that size class usually gets a manual. I disagree. The times I rented in Germany, automatics were always more expensive. Didn't matter seei
30 StealthZ : Ah, yes my first experience with North American roundabouts was interesting, likely worsened by the fact that I had been driving there for weeks and
31 Post contains images Andz :
32 Post contains images Pelican : Nope not anymore. I rent quite regular because I don't own a car. And during 2006 it became really difficult to get a manual for this size. Okay if y
33 Post contains images Cornish : Says the man who's car was styled by Kia
34 Post contains images Andz : I don't care who styled it, I like it and that's all that counts! Let's not let this develop into A vs B!
35 Post contains images Cornish : It wouldn't be A.net if we didn't
36 N1120A : In Germany, I have only ever rented with Sixt and their cars still list with a manual.
37 Pelican : That's why I've said they changed their standard to automatic last year. Trust me I've a Sixt Gold Card because I'm a regualar customer. Last time I
38 Gemuser : My exprience in France, Spain & Italy is that automatics are much more expensive and EVEN IF ORDERED SIX WEEKS IN ADVANCE are often not aviable when y
39 Post contains images L410Turbolet : Next time you are going to rent with Sixt, try it without logging in your card number. Will save you a lot of money.
40 Post contains images Pelican : What do you know what I don't? The price is shown before I enter my number... pelican
41 RichardPrice : Just checked with our rental team (we act as an aggregator for roughly 5,000 hires a day) and the premium across the board is something in the range
42 AsstChiefMark : Whoa! What are the companies? A posh automatic would be nice the next time I'm there. Mark
43 Post contains images RichardPrice : EuropeCar, Hertz, Budget Rent-a-car, Avis, Enterprise. Our list is endless
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