[s-cars] Mmmm, shifty business...

Taka Mizutani t44tqtro at gmail.com
Mon Apr 23 19:48:46 EDT 2007

I like playing with the stick shift too much to give it up. Now that's an
invitation to all sorts of abuse! :-)

Nothing like doing a perfectly executed downshift, blipping the throttle
just-so, getting the gears engaged smoothly and getting the timing between
shifter action and clutch engagement perfectly. With the short gears of both
Japanese cars in the garage, there is a lot of shifting going on. I have the
option of taking a really curvy and fun road home- when traffic is light,
there is the opportunity for lots and lots of up/downshifting, nailing the
apexes, getting on the throttle at the right point, etc. IOW, pure driving

I can't experience that with an automatic. Give me a DSG, SMG, F1, e-gear,
whathaveyou, I can get some of that (with perfect gear engagement every time
without fail), but not with a torque converter slushbox.

When I had the Miata in the shop for inspection, new windshield and an
alignment, I was driving around a base model Mazda 3 sedan with the
tiptronic slushbox. It was definitely more fun to take that twisty road home
with the tiptronic versus leaving it in "D," definitely a bit more control.
The base Mazda slushbox shifts faster than any Audi I've driven (B5-7, C5-6,
D2-3) and the Volvo, but it's still lacking. However, that is one of the
best rental car drives out there- much better than a Cobalt, G5, G6,
Corolla, Sentra, Elantra or

I'll be convinced more with a high-powered car with a DSG box. When is Audi
going to make a longitudinal DSG box that can take high torque? S8 w/ DSG
and the V10 would be fun, fun, fun. Talk about teaching Miss Piggy to fly.


On 4/23/07, pkrasusky at ups.com <pkrasusky at ups.com> wrote:
> Matt wondered:
> <<<Date: Sat, 21 Apr 2007 07:17:06 -0600
> From: Matt Russell < skippertgore at msn.com>
> Subject: Re: [s-cars] Mmmm, shifty business...
> Nice discussion, guys...  *raises glass*...
> Now, how about a few more data points for those of us with 3 year olds
> who don't have time for test rides... ;-)
> 03 S6 avant... poor driver with the slushbox?  (Probably heavy, is my
> guess, going back to your points, Scott.)
> how about the new A3/S3? isn't that available with the same DSG the R32
> shares?
> .. Although depreciation hasn't brought either of these to an
> affordable level yet (S6 is close), i'm filing away for future
> reference.
> Course the other thing I'm considering is a 1.8t A4 avant for the wife,
> as I've seen them for way less than 10 grand.
> For me, I'll continue to fix the urS4, and probably "settle" with a new
> FJ1300R  in another year or 2.
> -Matt, CO
> 92 s4
> 83 Seca 900>>>
> Hey Matt!
> Whattaya mean "those with 3 yr. olds and no time for test rides"????
> Try 4+, 2+, and 2+!?  8-)  It's called - don't sleep much.  D'oh.
> Anywho, an '02 //S6 Avant made its way through these here parts a few
> months ago before it was picked up by a lister in CA and driven home
> (awesome!).  I put a few good miles on it before she left and
> *thoroughly* enjoyed it (no worries Chris - nothing JNR worthy, no farm
> animals were involved, etc.).  I was quite surprised really.  It felt
> like a slightly more agile version of me //S8.  It's slightly less
> powerful (something like 340h vs. 360h) and slightly heavier (something
> like 4,200lb vs. 4065) IIRC, but it felt pretty much the same overall -
> dimensions aside.  THAT was very notable.  It felt tiny compared to a
> D2!
> Does the autobox render it a poor driver?  No.  It's got the Sport mode
> shifter which is a very dynamic program.  It's pretty effective, well,
> as well as it can be for what it is.  See prior discussions regarding
> "adapting" your driving style and acclimation period.
> Will it convert a "stick only" die hard kinda guy?  No.
> Me, I kinda sorta came to the surprisingly rational conclusion that I
> was alienating myself from a ton of fine iron if I relied upon the
> stick-only edict.  There's a lot of fun to be had out there, just need
> to cross "that" bridge.  I still am a stick-only kinda guy at heart, now
> just realize that it's better to lower my standard and try and auto if
> the rest of the car is compelling enough to do so.  The S6A IMO is, as
> are others.
> I think part of my stick-only mantra was deeply Freudianly based within
> some odd need to prove something to myself.  Well, I've proved it, BTDT
> with sillysticks doing sillythings, and now have opened my mind up to
> enough to be able to try something else.  It's unfort. not so easy for
> others to do the same.  Maybe they subconsciously have something to
> prove?  Paging Dr. Freud.  OK, that's harsh, and I do understand the
> stick-only phenomena.  Just think denying oneself ownership of so many
> fine things out there due to lack of said stick is foolhardy.  Esp. when
> you have a TR3 waiting to commute in heh heh.
> Get on out there when The Boy is sleeping and whomp on some stuff
> already now would ya????  8-).  Methinks you'll dig the S6A - chictronic
> be damned.  And they are becoming affordable finally.
> HTH, oSaSaT, I think.
> -Paul hey whattdoIknow K.
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