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Auto Or Manual Whats The Best For Towing.?


telshe
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You would have not got me anywhere near an auto a few years back. Now I can't believe it took me so long to come round to owning one.

 

Advantages

 

Effortless driving especially in heavy traffic, no clutch to wear out

 

Disadvantages

 

Increased fuel consumption, expensive if they go wrong

 

Must be other advantages and disadvantages but I just can't think of them at the moment. Still wouldn't part with mine now I have got it.

 

Paul

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The advantages are as above plus the fact that the car won't roll back from a stand-still, you can't stall it, it will automatically drop a gear when you're going up hills, and its just one less thing to worry about when you're looking for that road sign!

 

Downsides on top of those already posted are that, in some cars, the max towing limit drops quite considerably compared to the manual version, and you do sometimes get that out-of-control feeling from the lack of engine braking when on the motorway or approaching junctions. If you get a tiptronic style box where you get to use it in a semi-manual way when you need to, then I'm sure this wouldn't be a problem.

 

Mike

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We have towed with both manual and automatics. Given the choice, we would now only tow with a diesel automatic with a tiptronic style facility. Our current tow car is an automatic with an intelligent box that adjusts to the driving style/load. On modern automatics, there is hardly any difference in mpg between manual and auto. On our car at least, the towing limit remains the same as the manual, i. e. 1800 kg. Also remember that the kerbweight of an automatic will be greater than a manual

 

See: http://www. archersofashby. co. uk/Durashift/durashift_5. htm

 

Yossa

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The Caravan Club magazine wrote an article on Manual and Automatic cars for towing and I think they come about about the same. Can not rememeber which month it was though ;)

 

Personally I would always go for Manual gear box as I have towed with both and I think the Manual is a lot better.

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The beauty of a tiptronic style automatic box is that you can use it for fully automatic gear changes or manual gear changes but without the need of a clutch. Not having a clutch means no smelly or burnt out clutch!

 

Yossa

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I have driven both and tow with a manual but mainly because of the fuel comsumption penalty (about 20%) with the Passat automatic at the time of purchase. Towing is to most of us a relatively small proportion of our annual mileage.

 

Most current automatics are much more frugal than they used to be.

 

I prefer solo driving with a manual box but for towing I would say an automatic coupled to a turbo diesel is the way to go,although the reduced engine braking is a disadvantage.

 

The current VAG trend for the semi-automatic/preselector setup is supposed to be very good solo but it still involves clutches so may not have any advantage over a conventional automatic. I haven't seen any towing tests on these yet.

 

Frank

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Frank,

 

The caravan club mag tested a Golf TDI with the DSG gearbox a couple of months ago and really liked it. They said the pre-selection of the 'box was excellent most of the time, with improved engine braking coming from its facility of downshifting through the gears as you brake (sounds like that could be fun!).

 

Mike

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The Ford 5 Tronic automatic gearbox, as fitted to our Mondeo, allows engine braking to be used when needed. For example, when towing down steep inclines, I can select the most appropriate gear to allow sufficient engine braking to take place. I have also noticed that when driving solo and in automatic mode, the box will change down automatically to assist in braking when going down an incline.

 

Yossa

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Guest Hobbybod
. . . . . I prefer solo driving with a manual box but for towing I would say an automatic coupled to a turbo diesel is the way to go,although the reduced engine braking is a disadvantage.

 

The current VAG trend for the semi-automatic/preselector setup is supposed to be very good solo but it still involves clutches so may not have any advantage over  a conventional automatic. . . . . . . . Frank

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I agree with Frank et al. on the auto, turbo diesel & like others, I have towed with both manual and auto gearboxes and for 90% of the time I far prefer the auto box. When it's snowy & icy & muddy, I did prefer a manual box, but with modern 'traction control' systems I guess that auto's aren' t far behind.

 

The fact that the new VAG Direct Shift Gearbox has two clutches, but no torque converter is it's big advantage over normal 'slush box' autos. They can be practically as economical as a manual box, as they are just electronically contolled (automatically!) manual gearboxes. No torque converter to waste energy as heat, and it can be controlled manually, with the electronics working the clutches.

See Direct%20shift%20-%20double%20clutch%20-%20Doppelkupplung%20-%20diagram%20.jpg and his site.

 

Spoke to a CC chap who had a Leon with this gearbox and he said it was fantastic, but he hadn't towed with it at the time.

 

It's what I'm saving up for!!

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