The stress-free convenience they offer in bumper to bumper city traffic is unparalleled for most drivers.
It’s no surprise that cars equipped with automatic transmissions are becoming more and more popular in India. The stress-free convenience they offer in bumper to bumper city traffic is unparalleled for most drivers. However, in this thread we’re going to explore why automatic transmissions are a sensible purchase even for car owners who are chauffeur-driven.
Here are a few points I could think of. BHPians, please add to the list:
This is the obvious one, isn’t it? Automatic transmissions are much smoother than manuals and you’re way less likely to feel a jerk during a gearshift. Passenger comfort benefits from this greatly. Note that this is not applicable to AMTs, as they are just electronically actuated manual transmissions and therefore the shifts can be quite jerky.
Convenience for the times you / your spouse drive the car yourselves
Every chauffeur gets a day off, and when you need to make an outing on that day, driving shouldn’t be a dreaded activity.
No engine abuse by lugging, or revving too high
Regardless of the engine mode chosen, automatic transmissions do not let the engine revs drop below a certain point. At the same time, ATs usually shift up well before the redline too. This keeps your engine in the healthiest and safest RPM range, minimizing wear & tear.
No clutch pedal riding
Since there is no clutch pedal, there is no need to worry about the commonly encountered bad driving habit of riding the clutch. Your chauffeur can ride that dead pedal into the sunset – not a problem!
More number of gears to play with
Many auto-boxes nowadays come with 9 or even 10 gears (eg. Ford Endeavour). It might sound excessive, but a higher number of gears allows manufacturers to use smaller engines, improving overall efficiency.
You are always in the right gear
It is highly likely that the TCU will choose the right gear for the driving condition more often than the average driver will.
Better fuel efficiency
Remember back in the day when ATs had the stigma of lower fuel efficiency? Nowadays, automatic transmissions can be more fuel efficient than manual transmissions in real world scenarios, since they are tuned for efficiency and optimal up-shifts.
Your chauffeur will be less stressed
Cars equipped with automatic transmissions are less physically taxing to drive than those equipped with manual transmissions, especially for those with knee or lower-back pain. As a result, your chauffeur will be less stressed while driving, hopefully leading to a less stressful drive.
Less stress = More safety
When a driver gets frustrated on the road, it’s a recipe for disaster. Since automatic transmissions reduce the stress on the driver, the ride could be safer for everyone involved as well.
Better resale value
The desirability of automatic transmissions has been increasing sharply, so when the time comes to sell your car, you can be assured that the demand for ATs in the used car market would be even higher than it is today.
No back seat driving frustration
You don’t have to bite your tongue as you watch and wait for the driver to shift up or down a gear, or prompt him to do the same. It’s all taken care of.
Less chance of driver taking it to his choice of garage for a commission
Many automatic transmissions nowadays are complex and can only be fixed by the authorized dealers. This means that if something goes wrong, there are lower chances of your driver taking the car to a garage of his choice for a commission.
GPS-based automatic transmissions
Some modern transmission like the ones on Rolls Royce cars are GPS aided. They scan the road ahead and pre-select the correct gear, depending on the road condition and curves ahead.
Check out BHPian comments for more insights and information.
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