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Older drivers transitioning from a manual to automatic car


Popuplights

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I have just had my mum on the phone telling me she was looking at a new car, an automatic. She was obviously looking for my approval, And was disappointed when I said it wasn't a great idea. I'm wary of older drivers , she is 76, going to an automatic, then having a runaway incident where they jam their foot on the gas by mistake, and zoom off into the scenery. She was not happy about my response. 

Anyone else had a similar experience?

On another note, she will insist on looking at VW Polos. I think she should be looking at cars with a higher driving position for better visibility. Like a Jazz, or BMax. 

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Can happen to anyone. Wasn't it Tiger Woods that did similar not long ago and was lucky to survive?

Solution is to get a typical old person's car that has barely 100bhp, it won't be zooming anywhere. xD

Go for petrol instead of diesel for less low down torque, so all that will happen is a lot of engine noise before any action so more time to react.

Some of the newer stuff have driver aids such as anti collision detection where it will brake automatically (with some caveats) before mowing down people on zebra crossings.

 

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On 10/11/2021 at 16:17, sarahbell said:

Go with her to test drive some? (Are we allowed to test drive cars?)

Why not. I think most people like automatics once they have tried them. They are not "witchcraft" any more.

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21 hours ago, Option5 said:

Remember, all the Lamborghinis, Ferraris etc with flappy paddle gearboxes are classified as automatic.

You have a chance to have the coolest mum in town.:D

A bit beyond my price range. I remember a clutchless Citroen I borrowed once.

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The last automatic I drove was a 968 Tiptronic dealer loan car. 

It was ok ish but the manual select lever was, in my opinion, the wrong way round as it was push forward to change up an backward to change down.

Put me off autos and the associated complexity.

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22 hours ago, MrPin said:

Why not. I think most people like automatics once they have tried them. They are not "witchcraft" any more.

I thought the proliferation of online buy it and get it delivered to your house had killed the test drive. (And covid) 

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28 minutes ago, sarahbell said:

I thought the proliferation of online buy it and get it delivered to your house had killed the test drive. (And covid) 

Ok for white goods type cars but no one is going to buy an interesting car without a test drive.

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On 12/11/2021 at 17:47, MrPin said:

Why not. I think most people like automatics once they have tried them. They are not "witchcraft" any more.

I would still have a manual for fun/track car, but my first auto is quite enjoyable.  I still keep forgetting I don't have to have my left hand ready to change gear and can chill out and lean back xD It even engine brakes if you put it in L 

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Chewing Grass
On 10/11/2021 at 13:36, Popuplights said:

I have just had my mum on the phone telling me she was looking at a new car, an automatic. She was obviously looking for my approval, And was disappointed when I said it wasn't a great idea. I'm wary of older drivers , she is 76, going to an automatic, then having a runaway incident where they jam their foot on the gas by mistake, and zoom off into the scenery. She was not happy about my response. 

Anyone else had a similar experience?

On another note, she will insist on looking at VW Polos. I think she should be looking at cars with a higher driving position for better visibility. Like a Jazz, or BMax. 

Get her an MG ZS then you don't have to worry about destroying it as they are half the price and it ticks all the driving position boxes. The Germans and their financiers don't deserve the money now they buy most of their running gear from China.

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Chewing Grass

With regard to transitioning to an Auto, the safest thing to do is have your left leg cut off as its always that one that gets the blood clots post injection anyway.

Two birds, one stone and all that.

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On 12/11/2021 at 17:47, MrPin said:

Why not. I think most people like automatics once they have tried them. They are not "witchcraft" any more.

I agree, I love an auto. I. Just not sure it's the time now, in the twilight of her driving career. 

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sleepwello'nights

A bigger problem is going from an automatic to a manual. Until you get re-acquainted the manual car jerk and stalls when you stop at a junction or traffic lights. 

I must confess though when I drove my first automatic it was so relaxing I almost forgot you still had to steer :o. My current car can steer itself, at speeds up to 40 mph. I've only tried it once though. On an empty stretch of motorway. 

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I've never driven a fully auto but have driven a car with an automatic manual box, a Stilo Abarth with 'selespeed'... it was ok when making progress but horrendous in crawling traffic, especially crawling traffic up a long hill (which I had to do most days) every time you attempt to move forward you either stall it through insufficient revs or give it too much revs and end up lurching and jerking forward and almost smashing into the back of the car in front.

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  • 4 weeks later...
On 14/11/2021 at 07:10, Royston said:

I've never driven a fully auto but have driven a car with an automatic manual box, a Stilo Abarth with 'selespeed'... it was ok when making progress but horrendous in crawling traffic, especially crawling traffic up a long hill (which I had to do most days) every time you attempt to move forward you either stall it through insufficient revs or give it too much revs and end up lurching and jerking forward and almost smashing into the back of the car in front.

That's neither one thing nor the other. It doesn't sound like a good idea.

Anecdotally I had to drive a van recently. It was automatic, which I thought unusual for vans. The bloke said since they changed the fleet to autos, the accidents had gone down by a third. It even works the parking brake for you, which is a bit over the top.

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On 12/11/2021 at 18:47, MrPin said:

Why not. I think most people like automatics once they have tried them. They are not "witchcraft" any more.

Inside an automatic gearbox.

c90946be7c8fe2edfe67a5a36d62b6c9.jpg

Edited by Option5
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On 12/11/2021 at 17:47, MrPin said:

Why not. I think most people like automatics once they have tried them. They are not "witchcraft" any more.

I prefer (modern) automatics to manual, in fact the last 5 cars I've had, were all DSG/semi automatic type ones.

Most people prefer easier options once they try them. The only negative with modern automatic gearboxes is that going into reverse can sometimes take a while.

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On 10/11/2021 at 14:56, BoSon said:

Go for petrol instead of diesel for less low down torque

that's not true anymore and hasn't been for some time. ie VW 1.4 TSI was a gamechanger (car magazine said the Golf TSI was probs the best car in the world back in 2013) and it's why a plethora of 3 cylinder turbos have gained such popularity..

@Popuplights they won't listen to you, my mum is the same....be firm:

GET OFF THE ROAD YOU OLD GIMMER!!! :Old:

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Glad to have found this thread. My old ma has just asked me about this as her car is being scrapped today, and she wants a 2nd hand automatic for pootling about the city centre (she refuses to do motorways, even dual carriageways are a source of fear!). 

I know little enough about cars, let alone automatic gearboxes. Am I right in thinking that they are no longer something that will inevitably go wrong and costs lots to repair?

She's erring towards models like Jazz or Yaris, which I think is sensible. Is it easy enough to find decent 2nd hand autos of such cars, or are they a much more specialist market segment? Higher cost than manuals? 

Any tips I can pass on would be massively appreciated. 

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27 minutes ago, LC1 said:

Glad to have found this thread. My old ma has just asked me about this as her car is being scrapped today, and she wants a 2nd hand automatic for pootling about the city centre (she refuses to do motorways, even dual carriageways are a source of fear!). 

I know little enough about cars, let alone automatic gearboxes. Am I right in thinking that they are no longer something that will inevitably go wrong and costs lots to repair?

She's erring towards models like Jazz or Yaris, which I think is sensible. Is it easy enough to find decent 2nd hand autos of such cars, or are they a much more specialist market segment? Higher cost than manuals? 

Any tips I can pass on would be massively appreciated. 

Most do not go wrong, for the life of the car.

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longtomsilver
On 13/11/2021 at 16:13, sarahbell said:

I thought the proliferation of online buy it and get it delivered to your house had killed the test drive. (And covid) 

Anedotal: when I learned to fly helicopters early 2000s my instructor picked up a phone call on the office.... it was a well known telephones tycoon who had recently been banned from driving his ferrari and thought he'd just buy a brand new R44 delivered to his garden by sloane helicopters. 

The phone call literally went like this...

"Hi! I've bought myself a new helicopters and can get the engine started but don't know how to get the rotors turning?!"

My instructor changed my flight plan - jumped in with me and we went and picked him and his helicopter up and brought it back to the airfield as lessons had to be carried out from there and not his back garden 🤣🤣

 

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