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Require Manual Shift Cars = Fewer Accidents?  
User currently offline767Lover From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Posted (6 years 10 months 3 weeks 5 days 18 hours ago) and read 3513 times:

After the unexpected death of my 14-year old Honda, we recently purchased a used Mazda. It's real economical, which is what we wanted, it's real cute and it's the first time I've driven a stick-shift in 14 years.

It takes a bit of getting used to....namely, getting used to NOT doing other stuff while driving (eating, drinking, using the phone, scanning Siruis, etc.) I am certainly much more focused on driving now, not only because both hands are tied up, but also because I have to pay closer attention to the cars in front of me so I can downshift if needed.

So I was wondering: Wouldn't phasing out automatic transmissions help reduce accidents? What do you think?

45 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offlineDfwRevolution From United States of America, joined Jan 2010, 970 posts, RR: 51
Reply 1, posted (6 years 10 months 3 weeks 5 days 18 hours ago) and read 3513 times:

I think it's zero sum.

Once you know what you're doing, I think you just lull your way back into some old bad habits. When I first got my manual Accord, I wouldn't touch my cell phone or radio. Now I just drive with my knees because I'm so comfortable with the shifting. Also, when you're very new, trying to coordinate one more activity takes your attention off the road.


User currently offlineLAXspotter From India, joined Jan 2007, 3650 posts, RR: 5
Reply 2, posted (6 years 10 months 3 weeks 5 days 17 hours ago) and read 3469 times:

Quoting DfwRevolution (Reply 1):
Once you know what you're doing, I think you just lull your way back into some old bad habits. When I first got my manual Accord, I wouldn't touch my cell phone or radio. Now I just drive with my knees because I'm so comfortable with the shifting. Also, when you're very new, trying to coordinate one more activity takes your attention off the road.

yeah that is what i see as well. My friend drives an M3, and he can chew tobacco, drink coffee, talk on the cell phone and everything in between even when driving stick.



"Patriotism is the last refuge of the scoundrel" Samuel Johnson
User currently offlineKFLLCFII From United States of America, joined Sep 2004, 3301 posts, RR: 30
Reply 3, posted (6 years 10 months 3 weeks 5 days 16 hours ago) and read 3469 times:

Quoting 767Lover (Thread starter):
It takes a bit of getting used to....namely, getting used to NOT doing other stuff while driving (eating, drinking, using the phone, scanning Siruis, etc.)

Hell, it never stopped me in my old truck.

-Burger (supported by wrapper) in the right hand...If I had to put it down, the bag was right in front of the center console. -Drink was in the cupholder on the center console itself.
-Would put the burger down in the bag if I had to take a sip of the drink.
-Steer *and* shift with the left hand, unless I was going around a curve...That be the case, I'd wait until around the curve before shifting.
-A ketchup and/or mustard-soiled hand was never allowed to come in contact with the steering wheel or gear shifter...ever.
-The drink was excluded from such requirement.
-Occasionally the left knee would command steering duties if extenuating circumstances existed...such as eating a burger *and* talking on the cellphone.
-I don't recall ever steering with the right knee...Probably because it maintained accelerator pedal duties at all times.



"About the only way to look at it, just a pity you are not POTUS KFLLCFII, seems as if we would all be better off."
User currently offlineMCOflyer From United States of America, joined Jun 2006, 8671 posts, RR: 15
Reply 4, posted (6 years 10 months 3 weeks 5 days 16 hours ago) and read 3469 times:

I do not own a manual so I can not say how one can be related to accidents. I imagine they would be about the same. This is a good question.

Hunter



Never be afraid to stand up for who you are.
User currently offlineSW733 From United States of America, joined Feb 2004, 6321 posts, RR: 9
Reply 5, posted (6 years 10 months 3 weeks 5 days 16 hours ago) and read 3469 times:

I am from a place where most cars are manual, and I must say there are just as many accidents, or so it seems. I don't think it makes a big enough difference.

User currently offlineN1120A From United States of America, joined Dec 2003, 26444 posts, RR: 75
Reply 6, posted (6 years 10 months 3 weeks 5 days 16 hours ago) and read 3469 times:

Quoting MCOflyer (Reply 4):
I do not own a manual so I can not say how one can be related to accidents. I imagine they would be about the same. This is a good question.

If you are a truck driver, then you should have lots of manual experience.



Mangeons les French fries, mais surtout pratiquons avec fierte le French kiss
User currently offlineGuitrThree From United States of America, joined Oct 2004, 2045 posts, RR: 8
Reply 7, posted (6 years 10 months 3 weeks 5 days 16 hours ago) and read 3396 times:

Quoting 767Lover (Thread starter):
So I was wondering: Wouldn't phasing out automatic transmissions help reduce accidents? What do you think?

Hummm.. a 16 year old teeny-bopper with a cell phone, car stereo/ipod, and multi-colored shoe-polish covered windows with hearts and the phrases of "I love you (fill in the name)" and "Seniors 2010!!!" is more than enough distraction. And you want to now add an extra "shift-thingy?"

Ummm, no. I seriously don't think phasing out automatics would help anything.



As Seen On FlightRadar24! Radar ==> F-KBNA5
User currently offlineLobster From Germany, joined Oct 2008, 49 posts, RR: 0
Reply 8, posted (6 years 10 months 3 weeks 5 days 16 hours ago) and read 3396 times:

I still did all the things I shouldn't do while driving when I had a 5spd. You just learn to adjust how you do things.

User currently offlineVikkyvik From United States of America, joined Jul 2003, 9945 posts, RR: 26
Reply 9, posted (6 years 10 months 3 weeks 5 days 16 hours ago) and read 3396 times:
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Quoting 767Lover (Thread starter):
So I was wondering: Wouldn't phasing out automatic transmissions help reduce accidents? What do you think?



Quoting DfwRevolution (Reply 1):
Once you know what you're doing, I think you just lull your way back into some old bad habits. When I first got my manual Accord, I wouldn't touch my cell phone or radio. Now I just drive with my knees because I'm so comfortable with the shifting. Also, when you're very new, trying to coordinate one more activity takes your attention off the road.

 checkmark 

I've driven a manual for a few years now, and I'm so used to it, that whenever I drive an automatic, I try and stomp on the clutch, only to find that nothing's there.

Being used to it means that I've developed the ability to talk on the phone, eat, drink, etc, etc, etc, while driving my stick-shift in city traffic. Most of the time, I'm not even really paying attention to shifting.



"Two and a Half Men" was filmed in front of a live ostrich.
User currently offlineMCOflyer From United States of America, joined Jun 2006, 8671 posts, RR: 15
Reply 10, posted (6 years 10 months 3 weeks 5 days 16 hours ago) and read 3396 times:

Quoting N1120A (Reply 6):

If you are a truck driver, then you should have lots of manual experience.

I deliver pizzas.

Hunter



Never be afraid to stand up for who you are.
User currently offlineFuturecaptain From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 11, posted (6 years 10 months 3 weeks 5 days 14 hours ago) and read 3396 times:

It probably wouldn't cut down on accidents. But.....

How much gas do you think America would save by phasing out automatic transmissions? Stick shift generally gets better mileage than automatic cars. Say an average of 5 mpg extra, times the million cars in the country, times all the miles we drive annually. Could add up to significant fuel savings very quickly.


User currently offlineLAXspotter From India, joined Jan 2007, 3650 posts, RR: 5
Reply 12, posted (6 years 10 months 3 weeks 5 days 14 hours ago) and read 3396 times:

Quoting Futurecaptain (Reply 11):
How much gas do you think America would save by phasing out automatic transmissions? Stick shift generally gets better mileage than automatic cars. Say an average of 5 mpg extra, times the million cars in the country, times all the miles we drive annually. Could add up to significant fuel savings very quickly

good point.



"Patriotism is the last refuge of the scoundrel" Samuel Johnson
User currently offlineTLG From United States of America, joined Jul 2005, 370 posts, RR: 0
Reply 13, posted (6 years 10 months 3 weeks 5 days 14 hours ago) and read 3396 times:

Quoting Futurecaptain (Reply 11):
How much gas do you think America would save by phasing out automatic transmissions? Stick shift generally gets better mileage than automatic cars. Say an average of 5 mpg extra, times the million cars in the country, times all the miles we drive annually. Could add up to significant fuel savings very quickly.

While that was true in the past, I don't think that's the case anymore. Automatic transmissions have come a long way in the last 40? years, and with torque converter locks and overdrives the economy is very similar to a vehicle with a manual.

-TLG


User currently offlineFuturecaptain From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 14, posted (6 years 10 months 3 weeks 5 days 13 hours ago) and read 3396 times:

To add to my above post.

The DOT says there are around 250 million registered passenger vehicles in the US and the average mpg for the country is 17.1. We supposidly drove about 3,000,000,000,000 miles over the course of a year. That's right, 3 trillion miles are driven by Americans every year.

If that milage was driven at an average of 17.1 mpg, the national average, we used approx ~175,000,000,000 gallons of fuel.

Say every vehicle tomorrow turns into a stick shift. Using my above guess of a manual getting an extra 5 mpg, this would bring the national average up to 22.1 mpg.

3 trillion / 22.1 = ~136,000,000,000 gallons of fuel.

So, 39 billion gallons saved every year nationwide. Times ~$3.00 / gal is ~$117 billion dollars saved, or $680 per vehicle per year.

May not seem like alot of $$$ to some, but I sure as hell would take an extra $680 bucks a year.


Say you start with nothing and put that $680 in an account earning 6% interest compounding once a month.
After 10 years you have $9300
After 20 years you have $26000
30 years = $57000
40 years = $113,000


User currently offlineAsuflyer05 From United States of America, joined Feb 2004, 2371 posts, RR: 3
Reply 15, posted (6 years 10 months 3 weeks 5 days 12 hours ago) and read 3396 times:

Quoting GuitrThree (Reply 7):
Hummm.. a 16 year old teeny-bopper with a cell phone, car stereo/ipod, and multi-colored shoe-polish covered windows with hearts and the phrases of "I love you (fill in the name)" and "Seniors 2010!!!" is more than enough distraction. And you want to now add an extra "shift-thingy?"

Exactly.

Quoting Futurecaptain (Reply 11):
How much gas do you think America would save by phasing out automatic transmissions? Stick shift generally gets better mileage than automatic cars. Say an average of 5 mpg extra, times the million cars in the country, times all the miles we drive annually. Could add up to significant fuel savings very quickly.

Not sure about other cars, but for the Honda Accord and Civic both get better gas mileage with the automatic. Honestly, it's not that big of a difference either way. It all comes down to the driver. If you drive a stick and need 6000rpm to roll away from a stop sign becase you're afraid of stalling, you should own an automatic.


User currently offlineFuturecaptain From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 16, posted (6 years 10 months 3 weeks 5 days 12 hours ago) and read 3396 times:

Quoting Asuflyer05 (Reply 15):
If you drive a stick and need 6000rpm to roll away from a stop sign becase you're afraid of stalling, you should own an automatic.

That's true.

I guess what would really help is better driver education and stricter requirements before licensing drivers in America. But, I'm not convinced this is a cure-all answer either.


User currently offlineSA7700 From South Africa, joined Dec 2003, 3431 posts, RR: 26
Reply 17, posted (6 years 10 months 3 weeks 5 days 11 hours ago) and read 3396 times:
AIRLINERS.NET CREW
HEAD MODERATOR

Quoting 767Lover (Thread starter):
Wouldn't phasing out automatic transmissions help reduce accidents? What do you think?

In South Africa we have predominantly manual cars. Road fatalities for the year 2006: 15393 lifes. That is for a country almost twice the size of Texas. IMO driver education and attitude has got a lot to do with it.



When you are doing stuff that nobody has done before, there is no manual – Kevin McCloud (Grand Designs)
User currently offlineManuCH From Switzerland, joined Jun 2005, 3011 posts, RR: 47
Reply 18, posted (6 years 10 months 3 weeks 5 days 11 hours ago) and read 3396 times:
AIRLINERS.NET CREW
HEAD MODERATOR

Quoting Futurecaptain (Reply 11):
How much gas do you think America would save by phasing out automatic transmissions? Stick shift generally gets better mileage than automatic cars.

This is not true anymore for new automatic transmissions, at least not all of them. Furthermore, it's much easier to get *worse* mileage out of a stick shift if you don't know how to drive it correctly (ie. when to shift).

My car, in any case, has a better mileage with an automatic than with a shift.



Never trust a statistic you didn't fake yourself
User currently offlineLTBEWR From United States of America, joined Jan 2004, 13086 posts, RR: 12
Reply 19, posted (6 years 10 months 3 weeks 5 days 11 hours ago) and read 3396 times:

Too many people in the USA are only bearly compentent drivers to begin with and would be totally incompetent with stick cars. To me, urban/suburban driving conditions and traffic discourage, relatively cheaper fuel costs and larger engines mean sticks are seen as impractical so auto transmission cars are overwhelming preferred here.

User currently offlineME AVN FAN From Switzerland, joined May 2002, 13920 posts, RR: 25
Reply 20, posted (6 years 10 months 3 weeks 5 days 3 hours ago) and read 3134 times:

Quoting 767Lover (Thread starter):
getting used to NOT doing other stuff while driving (eating, drinking, using the phone, scanning Siruis, etc.) I am certainly much more focused on driving now, not only because both hands are tied up, but also because I have to pay closer attention to the cars in front of me so I can downshift if needed.

So I was wondering: Wouldn't phasing out automatic transmissions help reduce accidents? What do you think?

Absolutely NOT. If you are used to drive per manual shifting of gears, you can do all those things mentioned like eating, drinking, phoning, etc without any problems. Quite to the contrary, whenever having had the opportunity to drive an automatic, I felt I had far more time to concentrate on the traffic in front of me, beside me, and behind me. AND, in countries where the automatics are dominant, the driving is much much calmer than in the manual-driving dominated countries, which reduces accidents quite considerably.
-
That your country is very low with accidents per kilometers driven to a very good part is the success of the automatics.


User currently offlineSabena332 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 21, posted (6 years 10 months 3 weeks 5 days 3 hours ago) and read 3118 times:

Quoting ManuCH (Reply 18):
Quoting Futurecaptain (Reply 11):
How much gas do you think America would save by phasing out automatic transmissions? Stick shift generally gets better mileage than automatic cars.

This is not true anymore for new automatic transmissions

 checkmark 

VW's DSG and Audi's Tiptronic and Multitronic transmissions shift more econimical than a human could ever do with a manual transmission.

Patrick


User currently offlineBaroque From Australia, joined Apr 2006, 15380 posts, RR: 59
Reply 22, posted (6 years 10 months 3 weeks 5 days 2 hours ago) and read 3099 times:

Quoting 767Lover (Thread starter):
So I was wondering: Wouldn't phasing out automatic transmissions help reduce accidents? What do you think?

Gotta ask, what did you do to your Honda to cause death at 14. My Honda was going fine at 28 when four weeks ago, and with misgivings, I parted company for an (sob) automatic. For an auto that is supposed to remember your driving habits, it gets some pretty odd interpretations of what I really want it to do.

I think autos make for all sorts of new ways to have accidents, having to go through R to get to Drive, creep, no clutch as a back up to whether you actually want to go or not. Countless interesting ways of making a foul up that just don't exist with a manual - or even a Manuel perhaps!

And those additional methods of getting into trouble are nothing to do with taking or making phone calls or pouring coffee in your lap. My left foot is likely to fall off due to lack of use, and changing gear with one hand and steering with t'other never did tax me unduly!  angel 


User currently offlineCanuckpaxguy From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 23, posted (6 years 10 months 3 weeks 4 days 21 hours ago) and read 3046 times:

All I've ever driven is a manual transmission. I've always assumed that people who drive cars with manual transmissions, do so deliberately, and enjoy driving. If you enjoy something, you're probably pretty good at it. Right? I think I'm a better driver than most, but doesn't everyone?

Seriously though, I think DFWRevolution is right --- it's a zero sum. The type of transmission in a car and the propensity for accidents are mutually exclusive.

Now, Corolla drivers are just plain bad drivers, regardless of the transmissions!  Wink

G


User currently offlineRFields5421 From United States of America, joined Jul 2007, 7607 posts, RR: 32
Reply 24, posted (6 years 10 months 3 weeks 4 days 20 hours ago) and read 3031 times:

Quoting GuitrThree (Reply 7):
Hummm.. a 16 year old teeny-bopper with a cell phone, car stereo/ipod, and multi-colored shoe-polish covered windows with hearts and the phrases of "I love you (fill in the name)" and "Seniors 2010!!!" is more than enough distraction. And you want to now add an extra "shift-thingy?"

Okay, it was a 65 Chevy 1/2 ton pickup and I didn't have a cell phone, or a radion - but the manual transmission never slowed me down.

The hardest part was teaching my girl friend to move the column mounted shift lever in sync with my left foot hitting the clutch.

My right hand was occupied with other tasks for our mutual satisfaction.


25 ME AVN FAN : And the calmer way of driving, resulting from the automatics, in reality leads to a lower fuel consumption anyway, as few average people can handle t
26 Brick : I had a 1982 Mazda 626 in high school that was a stick shift. I was very skilled at driving to school while eating a bowl of cereal. A stick shift won
27 Sabena332 : I agree, eating, drinking, talking on the phone, etc. is actually no problem while driving when you are used to shift manually. Same here, the traffi
28 Banco : Eh? What a bizarre statement! That's no more true than just saying that people who drive automatics simply dump the foot on the floor to get kickdown
29 Redngold : I don't think this would help we left-handers - except perhaps in left-side traffic areas.
30 Post contains images Cornish : or those of us on this side of the pond
31 Redngold : That's what I meant but you're not the only ones.
32 Vikkyvik : Just curious as to why that is. Is it because you tend to grip the wheel with your right hand? Or because it's easier to shift with your left?
33 Sprout5199 : Ahhh yes, the three on the tree. Thats the ONLY way to learn how to drive a manual shift. You know its in second when it hits your thigh, and reverse
34 Post contains images ME AVN FAN : not weird but simply realistic. I may be ready to excempt the British drivers from this harsh "judgment" ! but can say that it for sure is realistic
35 Sv2008 : I find RHD cars easier to drive than LHD, but I'm used to driving RHD in England and only drive LHD maybe one week a year on holiday, so it's difficul
36 ME AVN FAN : not weird, but simply realistic.
37 Banco : It's not realistic at all. It's been demonstrated a million times in real world driving that automatics use more fuel than equivalent manuals. It's a
38 ME AVN FAN : And even if, driving with automatics is more comfortable, calmer, and so is one of the reasons why the USA have a very low accident-rate
39 Banco : One, there's no justification whatsoever for saying an automatic is "calmer". I hate the bloody things, the lack of control makes me anything but cal
40 Post contains images Leezyjet : From reading this thread, it would seem the best way to have fewer accidents is to stop eating/drinking/yapping on the phone etc. and actually concent
41 ME AVN FAN : and the best drivers in my personal opinion. Fast but fair and relaxed. I however like the automatics, as I am NOT a control freak. But automatics te
42 Post contains images KFLLCFII : Never bothered me one bit...
43 Arrow : There are too many variables to make a bold statement like that. It's probably true that a professional driving a stick shift can coax better fuel ec
44 Banco : No, it's more than that. The fuel consumption figures (here at least) MUST mimic real world driving, they can't be some artificially created thing. A
45 Redngold : Yes, that's it. Most left handers have more dexterity with their left hand, since it is used more frequently.
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