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wife is on my case about getting the kid to learn to drive on a manual

Discussion in 'Off Topic [BG]' started by Icey101, Jan 18, 2012.

  1. yeh well all my married life we have driven manuals, i learn to drvie on a manual and so did the wife. Now that my boys are getting their Learners, one has left it later in age...so both on Learners now i want them to learn to drive the manual, so far its been challenging and i have had to spend a few hours going through clutch, gears, brake etc, i am keeping them to private roads and taking it slow. Now since the wife had just taken them out she is now on my case big time to buy an automatic to make it easier for them to drive. My 2 manual cars are less then 3 years old. We just had a big blue about it and i know she will be hammering me every day from now on....

    should i persist?
  2. fenderhutz

    fenderhutz Supporting Member

    Jan 28, 2007
    Harpers Ferry WV
    Considering buying a manual costs more and isn't really a standard in many cars, I'd say don't worry about it. For now anyway. The whole better gas mileage argument is moot now because most automatics coming off the line are getting similar gas mileage. Why give them another distraction trying to learn to drive? It just sounds old school to me, like teaching a kid to use a washboard, might come in handy some day, just not practical.
  3. jabsys


    Mar 30, 2011
    I'd stick to learning in a manual, pretty much everybody in the UK & Europe learns in a manual so it's not really a big deal, they'll regret learning in an auto when they want to buy a proper car but are stuck only being able to drive an auto.
  4. Marlat


    Sep 17, 2002
    London UK
    Bingo. Outside of the US and Australia manual cars are by and large the norm. Learn to drive a manual, its part of driving a car.
  5. Fenderhutz, I don't know about Australia, but in many places outside the US, manual is the norm.

    If you were to have an automatic only license in the UK for instance, you would be seriously limited in what you could get.

    I say keep on getting them to work with manual. It isn't much harder (heck, kids over here manage just fine). Then, if they want an automatic, let them get one.

    In Australia do you have a distinction in the drivers license between manual and automatic?

    Just wondering, because over here, if you pass your test using an automatic, your license only covers you for automatic, if you pass with a manual, you are covered for both automatic and manual.
  6. drteeth


    Apr 1, 2008
    Leuven, Belgium
    I'd teach them to drive manual in any case, then they can still choose to go automatic or not (but I'm European, and manual cars are the norm over here...). Anyway, then they have the option of driving manual should they ever need to.
  7. Mike N

    Mike N Missing the old TB Supporting Member

    Jan 28, 2001
    Spencerport, New York
    Everyone should learn to drive a stick.
  8. Pacman

    Pacman Layin' Down Time Staff Member Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 1, 2000
    Omaha, Nebraska
    Endorsing Artist: Roscoe Guitars, DR Strings, Aguilar Amplification
    Manuals don't cost more. When I bought mine, it saved me a thousand bucks.
    One of the big observations I've had since driving a stick again is that it requires the driver to be more "all in" to the task at hand. No drinking coffee/eating/talking on the phone, etc. I think, as a teenager, that's exactly the type of focus you'd want them to have.

    To the OP - stick to your guns. You don't want young drivers to have it easy - you want them to concentrate.
  9. fenderhutz

    fenderhutz Supporting Member

    Jan 28, 2007
    Harpers Ferry WV
    I agree learn it. It isn't important to learn on first. It was much easier learning a manual after driving auto for a while.
  10. +1

    I was going to add a post to say more-or-less the same thing.

    Also, if you are worried that having to change gear is going to be enough to distract them, they probably shouldn't be driving at all!
  11. Marlat


    Sep 17, 2002
    London UK
    I agree 100% with this. Driving a manual becomes second nature but requires you to have both hands involved in your driving at all times. This means you don't have a hand free to text message, do your make up etc which are bad driving habits. This is especially important with learner drivers.

    Also, if they arn't prepared to invest the time into learning to drive a manual before getting their license, how confident are you that they will be safe / well skilled drivers when they hit the road. If anything putting in the extra time before you start driving on your own is an investment in their driving skills when you arn't in the car.
  12. Otso


    Mar 6, 2006
    I feel that manual also makes you think ahead more when driving.
  13. BassBob1


    Dec 21, 2010
    I'll be 22 in a month and I am glad I pretty much learned to drive on a manual trans. I lived in the boonies when I was learning to drive and worked for a landscaper. I basically learned on pretty large dump trucks which were manual and when not working, on my mom's expedition which was auto. I bought my first car before I had me license. Which was a full size ford bronco and also automatic. I sold that after a year and bought my jeep which is a manual and because I learned on a manual early it was that much easier to adjust. I personally can't stand driving automatics anymore.
    My point is, until the manual trans goes away for good in the US (I sure hope it doesn't) it is a good thing to know. I say keep going with the stick. Your boy's will get it and be happy they know how later.
  14. BassPenguin22


    Jun 5, 2010
    No, I dont think so.
  15. Jonyak


    Oct 2, 2007
    Ottawa, Ont
    IMO manual gives you more control over the car. I like that.

    Also buying, buy a manual shift saves you thousands on most cars, and is more fun to drive.

    PS: I found the best way to teach people how to drive stick is to just make them do it. I learned because I was around 18 and my parents went on a long trip, and left me with the stick shift car. I had to get to work and such, so I learned pretty quickly how to do it.
  16. nutdog

    nutdog when I'm a good dog they sometimes throw me a bone

    Feb 19, 2009
    in the dog house
    I learned to drive in a 1956 International Harvester 16 gear aviation fuel truck at age 11. Have patience. If they learn in the manual, they won't regret it.

    As far as no distractions, my first car was a stick and I ate, drank and smoke many substances while driving it for 8 years as a wild and stupid young man.

    Having said all that, it may not be worth an argument with the wife.
  17. Strohsx


    Aug 16, 2011
    People who drive manuals are better drivers sorry we just are.
    get better gas milage
    manual cars are cheaper (we saved 800 bucks when we bought ours)
    Cheaper to repair

    and you have to pay greater attention to your driving (great for new drivers). Or less likely to get stolen too since we manual drivers are a dying breed.
  18. fdeck

    fdeck Supporting Member Commercial User

    Mar 20, 2004
    Madison WI
    HPF Technology LLC
    I don't think it'll take forever for the kids to learn how to drive stick. The embarrassment of conking out the engine is a pretty good motivator for figuring it out quickly. My mom was like: "Well, if you want to pass your driving test and get a license, you can learn to drive the stick."

    As for driving myself, I prefer automatic but it's not a big deal. Why control something that can control itself? For me, driving is about getting from A to B, and I'd let the whole car drive itself if it could.
  19. If they aren't willing to learn how to drive the 2 cars you both have, then let them know they don't have to drive :) .

    Other than that, I would find a deserted parking lot and let them be for a while, let them feel it out for themselves.

  20. When my wife and I got married, her parents bought her a used Civic 5-speed. She kept blowing off learning, and since our other car was also manual, she HAD to drive it. This meant driving to college and parking on some wicked hills. She learned REAL fast.

    I'm all about the kiddos learning manual.

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