What to consider when buying an automatic car

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What to consider when buying an automatic car

Buying a car is an exciting time for anyone, whether you are a first-time driver or you have been driving for years. A car is a symbol of independence, but it can be difficult to choose one that is just right for you.

With so many aspects to consider, the transmission is sometimes the last thing on any car buyer’s mind but choosing from used manual and used automatic cars for sale is a big decision. If you prefer the ease of an automatic transmission, there are some things to consider before making the final purchase.


Back to the basics

Just like a manual transmission, an automatic transmission’s purpose is to allow the engine to operate in its limited range of speed while providing a wide range of output speeds. Without a transmission, a car would be limited to only a single gear ration, making it nearly impossible to drive. An automatic transmission, and a manual transmission, allow for a range of speeds and a range of power for day-to-day or more intense driving.


Consider the power

When it comes to power, a manual transmission is a better choice, especially if you are planning on taking long road trips or have a particularly difficult road to travel each day. However, if you are looking for a car that gives you power while also being ideal for daily traffic, an automatic transmission is your best choice. Automatic cars can reach their top speed in 10.5 seconds, while this is not as fast as some manuals, it is perfect for city driving.


Look at the fuel economy

The modern used automatic cars for sale today have fuel economy ratings that are only 0.42km/l less than manual cars, making them equally as fuel efficient and some models have better mileage as automatic models. Fuel costs are constantly in flux, so it is good to know that if you are thinking about buying an automatic car, you will be able to save money due to their impressive fuel economy levels.


What will your maintenance and repair costs be?

Many automatic cars will need to be serviced on a more frequent basis than manual cars, despite how far automotive technology has come with this transmission. When something major happens, an automatic transmission may cost a significant amount more but manual transmissions have the added risk of clutch repairs. Clutch repairs are notorious for costing thousands of rands, and depending on how the clutch is used, can be a frequent job for a mechanic to perform on a car.


Are you able to multitask?

Outside of Northern America, manual transmission cars are much more common. That is not to say that everyone in South Africa is able to successfully drive a manual car, some need the ease and simplicity of an automatic transmission. If you are easily distracted or need to be able to focus on the road rather than changing gears, you are better suited to an automatic car. Those who have to sit in traffic on a daily basis usually prefer automatic cars, as they will not have to balance their clutch or worry about what gear they need to be in.


Identify your vehicular needs

If you are going to be driving long distances on a regular basis, then a manual car is a better choice for you. It offers control, speed and power which are ideal characteristics for South Africa’s busy freeways. However, if you are looking a zippy little number to drive around town or to and from work, then an automatic is the perfect option. You will not have to worry about balancing the clutch while on a hill, worry about changing gears or stalling in traffic. An automatic is preferred by those who live in and around city areas, due to their easy stop-start capabilities.


Suitable for everyone

If you are buying a car that is to be shared with a new driver or with someone who does not drive manual cars with much skill, an automatic car is a good choice. Because of their ease-of-use, anyone can drive an automatic car, and this is especially useful if a driver is on a route that requires a lot of hill starts. A hill-start is not easy for even the most skilled of drivers, and throwing gear changing and clutch balancing into the mix makes it distracting and difficult. Automatic cars can also be safer if a driver is in a situation that calls for quick action, and does not have time to gear up or down.


Used manual and automatic cars come with their own advantages and disadvantages, and once you have decided which transmission type you prefer, you can sit back, relax and enjoy the ride.

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