Why do manual transmission cars get better MPG?

I’d like to know why do manual transmission cars get better MPG (miles per gallon)? It seems like with all the modern technology we have, automatic transmission cars would work as well as manual. And I know that I’d like to reduce CO2 emissions & all that, but, I can’t drive a stick shift. Any ideas? Or do I just need to learn to drive manual, if I want to be more environmentally friendly?

Answer #1

Your best bet at reducing emissions is switching to a hybrid…

Answer #2

They don’t these days. I’m not a car expert or engineer. Forgot to mention what is an old car. The other thing I forgot to mention, the primary factor would be the “DRIVER”.
I would say your 95 300zx tt has computerized assisted shifting. That’s why that auto gets better mileage. My opinion new cars are when they introduced unleaded fuel, catalytic converters, computerized engine management with assisted shifting.
An old auto transmission would use “engine vacuum shifting” associated with “engine RPM” and “throttle position”.
Older cars using leaded fuel had stupid autos, back then, it was probably true manuals got better fuel economy. Bet it’s one of those old “urban myth sayings” people keep saying, while automatics have been built better and designed to run more efficient then manuals.

Answer #3

If you want to be more environmentally friendly the choice between a manual and an automatic shouldn’t really be a consideration. Hybrid vehicles are typically better for the environment in theory. But one of the reasons why manuals get better mpg than auto boxes in gerneral is because you are in control of the rev range. While an automatic is always downshifting too much to accelerate and stuff since the automatic controls it’s revs from the amount of travel in the gas pedal. Like for example if you bring the gas pedal past halfway down in an automatic it will probably downshift a gear or two since it will automatically assume you are wanting to accelerate pretty hard. But in a manual you control when you downshift and with most manuals you can prevent all the needless gear changes. And manuals will probably always be most fun but automatic transmissions are getting better. Thanks to modern technology some of the worlds fastest cars come only in automatic like the Mercedes SLR and Bugatti Veyron since the transmission technology was developed from Formula One the cars can change gears faster than humanly possible as is the case with many other sports cars like Ferraris and Porsches. Therefore the acceleration time in those vehicles is actually faster than that of the manual transmissioned version.

Answer #4

Why are SUV like land cruised and lexus Automatic? People buying SUV like them mostly fook for speed. So? Does automatictransmission have better pick up than MT?

Answer #5

thats not all true I drive a 95 300zx TT manual and a 95 300zx tt same engine and every thing except its a automatic and the automatic gets better gas millage because it shifts at lower rpms thats why most new cars that are automatic have over drive and it makes it so u get better mpg

Answer #6

The main thing is the age and size of the car and engine!! If you got a small car with 2.0 Lt engine “with no turbo/blower”. In old cars with rear wheel drive the auto and torque converter is about twice the weight then a manual. Also some older cars w/autos didn’t have a 5th gear. Older cars also relay on the position of the gas pedal to choose what gear the car is “supposed to be in” which is not efficient. I believe newer cars use lighter metals, intelligent and computerized efficient autos w/front wheel drive and prob get better gas mileage!!! Talk to a new car dealer.

Answer #7

The biggest reason why manual transmissions get better millege is because automatics have to use a fluid coupling called a torque converter between the engine and the mechanical gears. This is why you can stop a car with an automatic without having to press a clutch. The viscous coupling allows the engine to keep turning while the car is stopped. In motion the torque converter is not 100% efficient and looses some power. Some (perhaps most or all now) autos have a means to lock the torque converter when cruising to improve highway millege.

A new type of automatic transmission called constantly variable or CV has the potential to get better millege than manual transmissions. So far making CV transmissions for large, powerful, or heavy cars has been impossible so this technology is only used in a few applications so far. Drivers often find CV transmissions disconcerting. While going the same speed the engine may rev higher or lower for no apparent reason. The new Mini is available with a CV transmission but American drivers seemed so confused by the way it works the model for stateside use was programmed to change gears abruptly so it will feel normal to them.

The transmissions used in F1 cars are nothing like automatic transmissions in most road automobiles. F1 cars use manual tranmissions that along with the clutch and engine are computer controled and can change gears in milliseconds. When a F1 driver presses on of the shift paddles on their steering wheel the computer depresses the clutch, changes the gear, and matches the engine RPM to the new gear faster than any human could. Some road cars have paddle shifters are just automatic transmissions with paddles while others are the high tech gearboxes inspired by F1 technology.

The difference in millege between a manual and auto isn’t that much now so people should get whatever they prefer. Hybrids and most models of American cars are not even availble with a manual transmission. Manual transmissions are only common in economy and sport cars. I still recommend that new drivers learn to drive a stick so they can drive any car in a pinch.

Answer #8

“Your best bet at reducing emissions is switching to a hybrid… “

No by foot or bicycle.

Manuals are more fun than auto. If you want to reduce your emmisions then choosing betwen auto and manual isnt that big of a deal. At all.

Learn to drive a manual anyway, for the sheer fun of it. You can take off faster too :P

Answer #9

From what I’ve read, modern automatics get just as good mileage as stick shifts.

For the performance and reaction, automatics can never beat a stick shift though. Sticks will always be the “ultimate driving experience”

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