• The June 2024 Lotus Emira of the Month contest is underway! Please take a moment to check out thread here: 🏆 June 2024 - Emira of the Month starts now! (You can dismiss this message by clicking the X in the top right hand corner of this notice.)

Why manual?

For me everything that makes driving pleasurable comes with that mechanical interaction. I've had a few fun drives in PDK cars but really only because of the novelty factor. After a couple of days the gearbox just gets left in Drive and it becomes a simple means of transport. Relaxing yes, fun not so much.
As an aside/bonus I've always done very well residual wise buying the rarer manual option. Normally harder to find but an easy sell at top $
I must admit I've got lazy of late. With auto blip offered by most manufacturers I rarely heal and toe anymore. As that's not an option on the Emira I will have to dust my driving shoes off again 🙃
The final piece of the manual puzzle for me is the sound. Manual changes up and down always sound better to me. Not as night and day as it used to be with modern duel clutches, but it's still enough to upset my ears 😅
 
Yeah, try revving your super car as you pull into a parking lot or so the crowd can hear it...you have to go to Neutral to do it. A clutch is a great thing.
 
Great article. The clutch just lets you play more, plain and simple. Serious play, slow play, whatever. However, a lot depends on the car's use, what you have had in the past, etc. Paddles are very fun in fast revving engines.
 
I think that article pretty much sums it up.

Having tried a couple of DCT/Auto boxes, and wanting to like them, I always went back to a manual gearbox, the last one I tried was the Alfa Romeo Giulia Quadrifoglio, and prior to that the 4C. Didn't get those cars purely because they weren't available (at least in the UK) with a manual box. This extended to the Alpine A110 as well - would have definitely gone for one if it had a manual box.

Never even considered anything but a manual gearbox for the 15 years I was into Porsches, which led to all 7 having a manual gearbox. Even Porsche tried to phase it out (with the 991 GT3 & RS), but then thought the better of it, or rather were forced to bring back the manual gearbox when the 2nd generation 991 was announced.

The level of interaction one has when one is driving, especially for fun, and the satisfaction one gets from nailing a gear change, especially a correctly rev-matched downshift whilst hard on the brakes at the same time, is what I like most about using a manual box. Driving is so much more fun, and not just a case of trying to go fast - for a number of years now, cars have been too fast for most of the UK's roads anyway.
 
Last edited:
I think an interesting analogy is quick shifters (and slipper clutches) on sports bikes. On track days they are an absolute joy as you bang up/down through the gears, I describe it as what I imagine flying a jet plane must be like. It puts the world on fast forward. On the road though I think they’re irrelevant, it’s much more about savouring the connection of balancing revs, clutch and hooking gears with a toe. It’s the same level of enjoyment but on track it’s simply more engaging to concentrate on corner speed than gear shifts. Though to be fair on an air cooled classic sports bike there is a certain feeling of having performed a miracle when you get it right.

My ideal would be a flappy paddle track car and a manual road car. Don’t think the man maths will stretch to that though. As the Emira will spend 90% of it’s life on the road I cannot think of any reason not to have a manual. We have an ID3
and it’s a brilliant automated appliance but offers zero engagement. Enjoy manuals while they last.
 
I think an interesting analogy is quick shifters (and slipper clutches) on sports bikes. On track days they are an absolute joy as you bang up/down through the gears, I describe it as what I imagine flying a jet plane must be like. It puts the world on fast forward. On the road though I think they’re irrelevant, it’s much more about savouring the connection of balancing revs, clutch and hooking gears with a toe. It’s the same level of enjoyment but on track it’s simply more engaging to concentrate on corner speed than gear shifts. Though to be fair on an air cooled classic sports bike there is a certain feeling of having performed a miracle when you get it right.

My ideal would be a flappy paddle track car and a manual road car. Don’t think the man maths will stretch to that though. As the Emira will spend 90% of it’s life on the road I cannot think of any reason not to have a manual. We have an ID3
and it’s a brilliant automated appliance but offers zero engagement. Enjoy manuals while they last.
The only thing I'm not looking forward to on the manual is burning my hand when shifting the metal gear knob after it's been sat in the sun. I love the 2nd to 3rd shift in the manual , my favourite throw.
 
Manual for me, allows me to enjoy my car not only at higher speeds but more critically..........at low speeds.

This is something an automatic simply can't do, IMO.
 
The only thing I'm not looking forward to on the manual is burning my hand when shifting the metal gear knob after it's been sat in the sun. I love the 2nd to 3rd shift in the manual , my favourite throw.
Ceramic window film/ tint solves that problem
 
Must be great to live in country where this is allowed 😄
AFAIK it's allowed everywhere. They make a clear version that you would never know is on the window (non-darkening) that still stops like 98% of all UV and heat. It's amazing stuff
 
And if they get you with that clear version in Germany, you will have driven your Emira for the longest time ;)
 
And if they get you with that clear version in Germany, you will have driven your Emira for the longest time ;)
So you're not allowed to apply anything to windows at all, even if it doesn't darken the window? Germany is all about preventing global warming, right? Think how much extra energy it takes to run AC in the car when you could just block the heat from entering. Any such restriction should be immediately rescinded or the whole planet is going to burn. I'm phoning Greta right away.

In the USA most states have laws about how dark the window can be and they use a light transmission meter to verify if your tint is too dark. But the clear version you would never even know is there.
 
Last edited:
Correct. It‘s for example also forbidden to polish dull headlamps because polishing them could cause a change in the light beam.
 
The only thing I'm not looking forward to on the manual is burning my hand when shifting the metal gear knob after it's been sat in the sun. I love the 2nd to 3rd shift in the manual , my favourite throw.
Sun. What's that? Are you sure you live down the road from me 😂
 
Sun. What's that? Are you sure you live down the road from me 😂
I went out to Ashbourne today in my M3 roof down, yes there was sun. The run out confirmed it's definitely touring suspension. Matlock Bath was busy on the way back, can't wait to cruise through in the Emira!
 
Correct. It‘s for example also forbidden to polish dull headlamps because polishing them could cause a change in the light beam.
Odd that they take such a dim view on improved safety.
 
I went out to Ashbourne today in my M3 roof down, yes there was sun. The run out confirmed it's definitely touring suspension. Matlock Bath was busy on the way back, can't wait to cruise through in the Emira!
Yup I made the same conclusion about Touring the other day. It was nice today, hope you had a good time. Unfortunately I have Covid... so been stuck indoors the last week!
 
As for us it would not be daily, a manual car provides me a more engaging driving feeling if that makes sense, certainly more important than a possible 0.3 seconds faster acceleration time.
Same as with @Lankan , after the test drive with Alfa 4C we were almost heartbroken to decide not to buy it because of the auto box (went for Caterham instead), and same happened with the Alpine (which felt a bit too much as a daily drive to me)
We also had a BMW M2, there we test drove the auto and returned the car disappointed mentioning to the retailer we were not going to order it. A week later we decided to order after all because we enjoyed our manual 235 convertible a lot, so decided it must have been the gearbox spoiling it for us....Luckily for us this after delivery it was a very different car than the auto we test drove.

For a daily driver.....don't know

Friends of ours however, will contradict everything we say, just a matter of what you feel is important in a car.
Luckily we are not all the same :)
 
Yes manual, its the number 1 criteria when looking for a car and very difficult to find in anything interesting. I've had my BMW 320d for 9 years and as a manual I still take pleasure from the commute as I enjoy changing gear not to mention the whole control of gears/revs up and down. Paddles on a track in something seriously quick makes a lot of sense, but as mentioned anything I've driven on the road that has paddles ends up in drive.
Not to mention auto's often coming with 9 gears now, changing up and down those on the road becomes quite tedious (clicking back 8 times as you approach every junction/roundabout) - not to mention auto's are so keen to get into a high gear asap meaning you're forever having to kick down to do basic acceleration, at least a manual (usually) has only 6 and you always know where you are.
As the EU/Emissions are killing off the manual (and ICE) then the Emira is a last chance to grasp a manual ICE car, it will be almost twice what I've ever spent on a car before but feels like a last throw of the type of car I love, I hope Lotus nails it! :)
 
Last edited:

Similar threads

Back
Top